Hastening to Good Deeds

Since 2012-11-27

Hastening to Good Deeds Before The Coming of Death

 

Hastening to Good Deeds Before The Coming of Death
 
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
 
All praise be to Allah, and peace and blessings of Allah be upon the Messenger of Allah and upon his family, companions and followers.
 
Allah, Glorified and Exalted has called to hastening to performing righteous deeds, and to compete in what He has of the plentiful retribution and blessings. Allah almighty has said: {The last thereof (that wine) will be the smell of Musk, and for this let (all) those strive who want to strive (i.e. hasten earnestly to the obedience of Allah).} [Surat Al-Mutaffifîn: 26].
 
{خِتَامُهُ مِسْكٌ وَفِي ذَلِكَ فَلْيَتَنَافَسِ الْمُتَنَافِسُونَ} المطففين: 26
 
 

 

Transliteration:  Khitamuhu miskun wafee thalika falyatanafasi almutanafisoona
 
And Allah Almighty has also said: {For the like of this let the workers work.} [Surat As-Sâffât: 61].
 
{لِمِثْلِ هَذَا فَلْيَعْمَلِ الْعَامِلُونَ} الصافات: 61
 
 

 

Transliteration: Limithli hatha falyaAAmali alAAamiloona
 
The Great and Almighty has also said: {And those foremost [(in Islâmic Faith of Monotheism and in performing righteous deeds) in the life of this world on the very first call for to embrace Islâm] will be foremost (in Paradise). (10). These will be the nearest (to Allâh). (11). In the Gardens of Delight (Paradise).} [Surat Al-Wâqi'ah: 10-12].
 
 
{وَالسَّابِقُونَ السَّابِقُونَ (10) أُولَئِكَ الْمُقَرَّبُونَ (11) فِي جَنَّاتِ النَّعِيمِ} الواقعة: 10-12
 
Transliteration: Waalssabiqoona alssabiqoona (10) Olaika almuqarraboona (11) Fee jannati alnnaAAeemi 
 
When Imam Bakr ibn Abdullah Al-Mazny passed away, people crowded in his funeral and were competing in carrying his coffin, so Al-Hassan Al-Bassry told them – and he was present – “in the like of his deeds you should compete". Then, how could we compete in righteous deeds?
 
First: Self-Struggle (Jihad) on Obedience
 
O slave of Allah! Let it be known that: Hurrying to performing righteous deeds does not have but one way which is striving hard and patience; this is because the way to obedience is tiring and burdensome and it needs self restraint and taming, and driving it to Allah by toleration and patience.
 
It is the will of Allah Almighty that the way to Paradise is surrounded by unpleasant and disagreeable things, while the way to Hellfire is surrounded by lustrous desires, in order that Allah may distinguish the patient from the dissatisfied and the wicked (disbelievers, polytheists and doers of evil deeds) from the good (believers of Islamic Monotheism and doers of righteous deeds).
 
Abu Huraira, May Allah be pleased with him, said that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has said: "When Allah has created Paradise, He said to Jibril (Gabriel): 'Go and Look at it', and so he went and looked at it; and then he said: 'by Your Glory, Anyone who hears about it shall enter it', then He surrounded it with unpleasant and disagreeable things, and then He said: 'Go and look at it', so Jibril went and looked at it, then he came back and said: 'by Your Glory, I am being afraid that nobody shall enter it'." [Authenticated by Al-Albani]
 
«لما خلق الله الجنة قال لجبريل: اذهب فانظر إليها، فذهب فنظر إليها، ثم جاء فقال: أي رب! وعزتك لا يسمع بها أحد إلا دخلها، ثم حفها بالمكاره، ثم قال: يا جبريل! اذهب فانظر إليها، فذهب، ثم نظر إليها، ثم جاء فقال: أي رب! وعزتك لقد خشيت أن لا يدخلها أحد» صححه الألباني
 
It is narrated in the authentic Hadith book of Al-Bukhari that Abu Huraira, May Allah be pleased with him, said: the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has said: "Hell is concealed with lustrous desires and Paradise is concealed with unpleasant and disagreeable things".
 
«حجبت النار بالشهوات، وحجبت الجنة بالمكاره» رواه البخاري
 
Therefore, self restraint on performing acts of worship, obedience and restraining lustrous desires is the only way for competing in righteous deeds. Allah Glorified and Exalted has promised the one who is faithful in his strife with successfulness, company, right guidance and pertinence. Allah Almighty has said: {As for those who strive hard in Us (Our Cause), We will surely guide them to Our Paths (i.e. Allâh’s religion - Islâmic Monotheism). And verily, Allâh is with the Muhsinûn (good doers)} [Surat Al-'Ankabût: 69].
 
{وَالَّذِينَ جَاهَدُوا فِينَا لَنَهْدِيَنَّهُمْ سُبُلَنَا وَإِنَّ اللَّهَ لَمَعَ الْمُحْسِنِينَ} العنكبوت: 69
 
 

 

Transliteration: Waallatheena jahadoo feenalanahdiyannahum subulana wainna Allaha lamaAAa almuhsineena
 
In this verse, Allah Glorified and Exalted has associated the right guidance to striving hard, so the fully right-guided persons are those with the greatest striving.
 
My noble brother, let it be known that: the most obligatory strife is; striving hard with yourself, striving hard against your whims, striving hard against Satan, and striving hard against this worldly life. So whoever strives against these four things seeking the satisfaction of Allah, Allah shall guide him to the means of His content that lead him to His Paradise. The one who abandons striving hard; he will miss as much guidance as he has quit striving.
 
Al-Junayd said: People who strive hard against their whims for our satisfaction by repentance, we shall guide them to the ways of faithfulness.
 
My decent brother, let it be known that: Man cannot be able to strive outwardly against his enemy unless he strives against these enemies from the inside, so when he defeats them and triumph over them, he can defeat and triumph over his enemy, and if these things defeated him and triumphed over him, he will be defeated and triumphed over by his enemy.
 
In the interpretation of the words of Allah Glorified and Exalted: {And what will make you know the path that is steep? (12). (It is) freeing a neck (slave) (13). Or giving food in a day of hunger (famine),} [Surat Al-Balad: 12-14],
 
{وَمَا أَدْرَاكَ مَا الْعَقَبَةُ (12) فَكُّ رَقَبَةٍ (13) أَوْ إِطْعَامٌ فِي يَوْمٍ ذِي مَسْغَبَةٍ} البلد: 12- 14
 
Transliteration:  Wamaadraka ma alAAaqabatu (12) Fakku raqabatin (13) Aw itAAamun fee yawmin thee masghabatin 
 
Al-Hassan Al-Bassry, may Allah have mercy on him, said: by Allah, it is a very steep path: it is the strife of man against his self, against his whim and against Satan; his enemy.
 
Some have chanted:
 
I was afflicted by four ordeals throwing
Arrows at me, catching me in a trap
Lucifer, This Worldly Life, Self and Whim
So, Where Can I escape?
O Allah, help me with your forgiveness
I do not have anything against them but Your help
 
So, whoever obeys his Lord and struggles against his self and whims, and disagrees with his devil and worldly life, Paradise will be his house and shelter. And whoever goes far in his sins and wrong-doings, and loosens in this worldly life the rein of his disobedience, and agrees with his self and whims concerning his lustrous desires and pleasures and obeys his devil in all his lustrous desires, Hellfire will be the best place worthy of him. Allah Almighty has said: {Then for him who transgressed all bounds, (in disbelief, oppression and evil deeds of disobedience to Allâh). (37). And preferred the life of this world (by following his evil desires and lusts), (38). Verily, his abode will be Hell-fire; (39). But as for him who feared standing before his Lord, and restrained himself from impure evil desires and lusts. (40). Verily, Paradise will be his abode.} [Surat An-Nazi'ât: 37– 41].
 
{فَأَمَّا مَنْ طَغَى (37) وَآثَرَ الْحَيَاةَ الدُّنْيَا (38) فَإِنَّ الْجَحِيمَ هِيَ الْمَأْوَى (39) وَأَمَّا مَنْ خَافَ مَقَامَ رَبِّهِ وَنَهَى النَّفْسَ عَنِ الْهَوَى (40) فَإِنَّ الْجَنَّةَ هِيَ الْمَأْوَى} النازعات: 37- 41
 
 

 

Transliteration: Faamma man tagha (37) Waathara alhayata alddunya(38) Fainna aljaheema hiya almawa (39) Waama man khafa maqama rabbihi wanaha alnnafsa AAani alhawa(40) Fainna aljannata hiya almawa
 
Dear Brother, hasten in performing righteous deeds, hurry in performing deeds bringing you closer to Allah, be competitive in performing acts of obedience, and strive hard against yourself, your whims, your devil and this worldly life.
 
Run fast as death is fast behind your back
Never can you escape it or go back
 
Ibn Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him, said: the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has said: "There are two blessings which many people lose: (They are) health and free time for doing good ". [Reported by Al-Bukhari]
 
«نعمتان مغبون فيهما كثير من الناس: الصحة والفراغ» رواه البخاري
 
So take the initiative if there is still sometime to live
Your right conduct is accepted and avoidance is valued
Be serious, Hurry and Take the opportunity of youth
In the age of possibility, seek and win
 
And remember, O slave of Allah that competition in performing righteous deeds is a rank that cannot be reached but by the pious, who have believed in the retribution of Allah, Glorified and Exalted, and in the abundance of His blessings. So they took the initiative of good deeds and have been patient regarding hardships and difficulties and they have sold themselves to Allah. They seek the help and assistance of Allah, and they work by Allah and they put their trust in Allah. Abu Safwan Abdullah ibn Bisr Al-Aslamy, May Allah be pleased with him, said: the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has said: "The best of people is the one who lives a long life and his deeds are righteous".
 
«خير الناس من طال عمره وحسن عمله» صححه الألباني
 
Abu Abdullah ibn Thawban, the servant of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said: I heard the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, saying: "You should prostrate so many times, as that you will not prostrate for Allah once but that with every prostration He shall raise you a rank and removes a sin from you." [Reported by Muslim]
 
«عليك بكثرة السجود لله، فإنك لا تسجد لله سجدة إلا رفعك الله بها درجة، وحط عنك بها خطيئة» رواه مسلم
 
When the night comes, Fadhl ibn Yunus used to say: “A whole day has passed from my life”, then, when he wakes up in the morning, he used to say: “A whole night has passed from my life”. At the time of his death, he wept and said: “I have known that your passing and rotating will bring to me a very difficult day, of severe hardships, severe pain, severe grief, and severe horror, O there is no god but Allah Who has predestined death on his creatures, and Who has made it fair and just amongst His slaves, and then he recited the words of Allah Almighty: {Blessed be He in Whose Hand is the dominion; and He is Able to do all things.} [Surat Al-Mulk: 1]”.
 
{تَبَارَكَ الَّذِي بِيَدِهِ الْمُلْكُ وَهُوَ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ} الملك: 1
 
 

 

Transliteration: Tabaraka allathee biyadihi almulku wahuwa AAala kulli shayin qadeerun
 
Then, he exhaled and died, May Allah have mercy on him.
 
We feel happy about days passing
And each day passing is taking us nearer to death
So, work for yourself seriously and diligently
Profit and Loss shall be in your work.
 
My noble brother: if you know that the way to competition in performing righteous deeds cannot be taken unless by striving hard and patience, so take the initiative to these characteristics to be the best assistance for you in the troubles of the way. So the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has mentioned a group of the deeds of Al-Birr (piety, righteousness, and each and every act of obedience to Allah, etc.), which we should hurry to perform and compete in. Then he has concluded them by describing the virtue of patience, in reference to that these deeds cannot be reached but by that.
 
Abu Malik Al-Harith ibn 'Assim Al-Ash'ary, May Allah be pleased with him, said: the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has said: "Cleanliness is half of faith, and al-Hamdu Liliah (Praise be to Allah) fills the scale, and Subhan Allah (Glory be to Allah) and al-Hamdu Liliah (Praise be to Allah) fill up what is between the heavens and the earth, and prayer is a light, and charity is proof (of one's faith) and patience is a brightness and the Holy Qur'an is a proof on your behalf or against you. All men go out early in the morning and sell themselves, thereby setting themselves free or destroying themselves." [Reported by Muslim]
 
«الطهور شطر الإيمان. والحمد لله تملأ الميزان. وسبحان الله والحمد لله تملآن (أو تملأ) ما بين السماوات والأرض. والصلاة نور. والصدقة برهان. والصبر ضياء. والقرآن حجة لك أو عليك . كل الناس يغدو. فبايع نفسه. فمعتقها أو موبقها» رواه مسلم
 
The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has emphasized in this Hadith that, patience is brightness that clears the obstacles of the path to Paradise and helps man to overcome and transcend them.
 
As for how does patience happen? The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has clarified that in the Hadith by saying: "whoever seeks patience Allah will bestow patience upon him, and no one was given a greater or a more extensive gift than patience". [Reported by Al-Bukhari]
 
«ومن يتصبر يصبره الله، وما أعطي أحد عطاء خيرا وأوسع من الصبر» رواه البخاري
 
 
Second: performing a lot of righteous deeds so as to be closer to Allah:
 
As for the thing that we should hurry to perform and compete in, it is every act of worship that is loved by Allah Glorified and Exalted and that which causes His satisfaction. The most important of that and the most sublime are the religious duties which have been obligated by Allah on his slaves. Allah Glorified and Exalted has clarified that we cannot perform acts of worship to be closer to Him unless after performing the religious obligatory duties.
 
Abu Huraira, May Allah be pleased with him, said: the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has said: "verily Allah Almighty has said: whoever have enmity to someone devoted to me, I will declare war against him, and My slave will not draw nearer to Me with anything more beloved to me than what I have obliged him to do. And My slave continues to draw near to Me with supererogatory works until I love him, if I loved: I am his hearing with which he hears, his seeing with which he sees, the hand with which he strikes, and the leg with which he walks, if he asks me I will answer, if he seeks My protection I will protect him". [Reported by Al-Bukhari]
 
«إن الله قال: من عادى لي وليا فقد آذنته بالحرب، وما تقرب إلي عبدي بشيء أحب إلي مما افترضت عليه، وما يزال عبدي يتقرب إلي بالنوافل حتى أحبه، فإذا أحببته: كنت سمعه الذي يسمع به، وبصره الذي يبصر به، ويده التي يبطش بها، ورجله التي يمشي بها، وإن سألني لأعطينه، ولئن استعاذني لأعيذنه» رواه البخاري
 
My dear Brother, you should know that: the most important religious duty is the prayer, the one who maintains them and performs them as ordered by Allah Glorified and Exalted, his deeds will be accepted, while the one who wastes them will fail and lose. Abu Huraira, May Allah be pleased with him, said: the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has said: "The first thing which the servant of Allah will be asked and accounted for on the Day of Resurrection is his prayer, if it is good, he wins and succeeds, and if it is spoilt, he fails and loses. If there is something missing and incomplete in his obligatory prayer, Allah Glorified and Exalted says: look and see if my slave has any voluntary prayers, so as to complete the missing and incomplete parts of his obligatory prayer? Then, all his deeds will be accounted for accordingly". [Authenticated by Al-Albani]
 
«إن أول ما يحاسب به العبد يوم القيامة من عمله صلاته، فإن صلحت فقد أفلح وأنجح، وإن فسدت فقد خاب وخسر، فإن انتقص من فريضة شيئا، قال الرب تبارك وتعالى: أنظروا هل لعبدي من تطوع فيكمل بها ما أنتقص من الفريضة، ثم يكون سائر عمله على ذلك» صححه الألباني
 
Praise be to the One, even if we bowed with our foreheads on the ground
To Him on thorns and painful needles
We cannot though reach tenth of the amount of his blessings
Nor a small tenth, nor the tenth of the tenth
He is the Greatest, cannot be seen by our eyes
Glory be to Him, a King with an enforceable destiny
 
As for the rest of religious duties, some of the Hadith were narrated to confirm that performing them correctly is enough to enter Paradise, Allah willing. It is reported on the authority of Abu Huraira that a Bedouin came to the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and said: “O Messenger of Allah, direct me to a deed by which I may be entitled to enter Paradise”. Upon this he (the Messenger of Allah) has said: “you worship Allah and never associate anything with Him, establish the obligatory prayer, and pay the Zakat (alms giving) which is incumbent upon you, and observe the fast of Ramadan.” He (the Bedouin) said: “By Him in Whose hand is my life, I will never add anything to it” When he (the Bedouin) turned his back, the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has said: “He who is pleased to see a man from the dwellers of Paradise should catch a glimpse of him.” [Reported by Al-Bukhari] and in a another narration by reported by Muslim on the authority of Abu Ayub Al-Ansary: He added; “nor will I diminish anything from it.”
 
 

 

«أن أعرابيا أتى النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم فقال : دلني على عمل ، إذا عملته دخلت الجنة . قال : تعبد الله ولا تشرك به شيئا ، وتقيم الصلاة المكتوبة ، وتؤدي الزكاة المفروضة ، وتصوم رمضان . قال : والذي نفسي بيده ، لا أزيد على هذا . فلما ولي ، قال النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم : من سره أن ينظر إلى رجل من أهل الجنة ، فلينظر إلى هذا» رواه البخاري، وفي رواية لمسلم زاد «لا أزيد على هذا شيئا أبدا، ولا أنقض منه»
 
O noble brother: among the deeds that we should hurry to do is voluntary fasting and standing at night praying and worshipping Allah. Allah Almighty has said: {And in some parts of the night (also) offer the Salât (prayer) with it (i.e. recite the Qur’ân in the prayer), as an additional prayer (Tahajjud optional prayer - Nawâfil) for you (O Muhammad). It may be that your Lord will raise you to Maqâm Mahmûd (a station of praise and glory, i.e. the honor of intercession on the Day of Resurrection.} [Surat Al-Isrâ': 79].
 
{وَمِنَ اللَّيْلِ فَتَهَجَّدْ بِهِ نَافِلَةً لَكَ عَسَى أَنْ يَبْعَثَكَ رَبُّكَ مَقَامًا مَحْمُودًا} الإسراء: 79
 
 

 

Transliteration: Wamina allayli fatahajjad bihi nafilatan laka AAasa an yabAAathaka rabbuka maqaman mahmoodan
 
Allah has mentioned the condition of the believers at night praying and worshipping, saying: {They used to sleep but little by night [invoking their Lord (Allâh) and praying, with fear and hope].} [Surat Az-Zâriyât: 17].
 
{كَانُوا قَلِيلا مِنَ اللَّيْلِ مَا يَهْجَعُونَ} الذاريات: 17
 
 

 

Transliteration: Kanoo qaleelan mina allayli mayahjaAAoona
 
Qatada ibn Malhan, may Allah be pleased with him, said: the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him: "used to order us to fast the white days: the thirteenth, the fourteenth and the fifteenth." [Al-Albani said: authentic due to its multiplicity of narrations]
 
«كان رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يأمرنا بصيام أيام البيض ثلاث عشر وأربع عشر وخمس عشر قال» قال الألباني: صحيح لغيره
 
And as it is well known Al-Ma'rûf (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do) must be hurried to and competed in. Abu Dhar, May Allah be pleased with him, said: the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him has said to me: "Do not degrade any act of favor even if you meet your brother (or friend) with a smiling face". [Reported by Mulsim]
 
«لا تحقرن من المعروف شيئا، ولو أن تلقى أخاك بوجه طلق» رواه مسلم
 
Aisha, May Allah be pleased with her, said: the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has said: "Each human being has been created of the decent of Adam with three hundred and sixty joints, so when he says "Allah is the Greatest", "all praise be to Allah" and "There is No God But Allah", and when he glorifies Allah and asks for His forgiveness, removes a stone, a thorn or a bone from the path of people, or enjoins what is good and prohibits what is evil, to the number of this three hundred and sixty, will walk that day (the Day of Resurrection) having removed himself from Hellfire". [Reported by Mulsim]
 
«إنه خلق كل إنسان من بني آدم على ستين وثلاثمائة مفصل. فمن كبر الله، وحمد الله، وهلل الله، وسبح الله، واستغفر الله، وعزل حجرا عن طريق الناس، أو شوكة أو عظما من طريق الناس، وأمر بمعروف، أو نهي عن منكر، عدد تلك الستين والثلاثمائة السلامى. فإنه يمشي يومئذ وقد زحزح نفسه عن النار» رواه مسلم
 
So, my dear brother be keen on performing good deeds. And know that what you have offered to Allah will not be wasted. Allah Almighty has said: {Whosoever does a good deed, it is for his ownself, and whosoever does evil, it is against (his ownself). Then to your Lord you will be made to return.} [Surat Al-Jâthiya: 15].
 
{مَنْ عَمِلَ صَالِحًا فَلِنَفْسِهِ وَمَنْ أَسَاءَ فَعَلَيْهَا ثُمَّ إِلَى رَبِّكُمْ تُرْجَعُونَ} الجاثية: 15
 
 

 

Transliteration: Man AAamila salihan falinafsihi waman asaa faAAalayha thumma ila rabbikum turjaAAoona
 
And Allah Glorified has said: {And whatever good you do, (be sure) Allâh knows it} [Surat Al-Baqarah: 197].
 
{...وَمَا تَفْعَلُوا مِنْ خَيْرٍ يَعْلَمْهُ اللَّهُ...} البقرة: 197
 
Transliteration: wamatafAAaloo min khayrin yaAAlamhu Allahu 
 
So, perform a lot of good deeds that draw you closer to Allah, hasten to performing righteous deeds, and make every effort to help Muslims and to fulfill their needs, and be an intercessor for them amongst them; a reformer amongst them; be merciful to their weak and nice and caring to their orphan; treat their women well. Adorn yourself with good manners such as patience, gentleness, tolerance, forgiveness, turning away from the foolish, harm endurance, anger abandonment, and dutiful treatment of parents, kindness, generosity, bounty, spending, altruism and let your tongue wet with the remembrance and mentioning of Allah all the time.
 
Allah has witty slaves
Who divorced worldly life and feared temptations
They looked into it and when they knew
That it is not a homeland for a survivor
They made it the depth of the sea
And made the virtuous deeds a ship for it
 
Peace and blessings of Allah be upon our Prophet Muhammad and upon all his family and companions.
 
 
Ibn Khuzayma House
 

 

 

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