The Evil Consequences of Lying

Since 2012-12-05

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Stick to truthfulness, as it leads to righteousness, and righteousness leads to Paradise; and a person will keep on telling the truth until he becomes a truthful person.” [Reported by Al-Bukhari]

O people! Fear Allaah and be among those who are truthful in their worship to Allaah and in their treatment of His servants. Be sincere to Allaah in your worship, with no showing off or seeking of reputation. Abide by the commands of Allaah in order to attain nearness to Him and obtain His good rewards; shun His prohibitions in order to avoid being far from His mercy and being liable to His punishment. Do not seek anyone's praise for your worship of Allaah, for He is the One Who does not stand in need of a partner. If anyone does anything in which he associates anyone else with Him, He shall abandon him to the one whom he associates with Allaah.

Be truthful to the Messenger of Allaah (peace be upon him) without failing to follow his Sunnah and without introducing innovation to it. Be truthful to people when you deal with them, telling them the truth and explaining to them the reality. Allaah the Almighty orders you to be truthful when he says that which means:
{O you who believe! Be afraid of Allah, and be with those who are true (in words and deeds).} [At-Tawbah 9:119].
{يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّـهَ وَكُونُوا مَعَ الصَّادِقِينَ} التوبة: 119


Transliteration: Ya ayyuha allatheena amanoo ittaqoo Allaha wakoonoo maAAa alssadiqeena
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Stick to truthfulness, as it leads to righteousness, and righteousness leads to Paradise; and a person will keep on telling the truth until he becomes a truthful person.” [Reported by Al-Bukhari]
«إن الصدق يهدي إلى البر، وإن البر يهدي إلى الجنة، وإن الرجل ليصدق حتى يكون صديقا» رواه البخاري
In this Hadeeth the Prophet (peace be upon him) explained that there is an end for truthfulness, which is righteousness that leads to Paradise and a rank within it for the truthful, which is Siddeeqiyyah, or trustworthiness, that is next only to the rank of the prophets.
Allaah the Almighty says that which means: {And whoso obeys Allah and the Messenger (Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم), then they will be in the company of those on whom Allah has bestowed His Grace, of the Prophets, the Siddiqun (those followers of the Prophets who were first and foremost to believe in them, like Abu Bakr As-Siddiq), the martyrs, and the righteous. And how excellent these companions are!} [An-Nisaa’ 4:69].
{وَمَن يُطِعِ اللَّـهَ وَالرَّسُولَ فَأُولَـٰئِكَ مَعَ الَّذِينَ أَنْعَمَ اللَّـهُ عَلَيْهِم مِّنَ النَّبِيِّينَ وَالصِّدِّيقِينَ وَالشُّهَدَاءِ وَالصَّالِحِينَ ۚ وَحَسُنَ أُولَـٰئِكَ رَفِيقًا} النساء: 69


Transliteration: Waman yutiAAi Allaha waalrrasoola faolaika maAAa allatheena anAAama Allahu AAalayhim mina alnnabiyyeena waalssiddeeqeena waalshshuhadai waalssaliheena wahasuna olaika rafeeqan
A truthful person is held in reverence among people in his life and after his death. He is the object of their confidence and praise and they supplicate to Allaah to bestow His mercy upon him after his death.
O Muslims! Beware of treachery in your worship of Allaah! Do not blemish your worship by showing off, pretence and hypocrisy. Beware of deceit in your adherence to the Sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon him); do not introduce innovations in his Sunnah and do not contradict his line of conduct. Beware of falsehood in your treatment with other people; do not tell lies, rather, tell the truth and only the truth. A believer can never be a liar, since dishonesty is a quality of the hypocrites.
Allaah the Almighty says that which means: {… And Allah bears witness that the hypocrites are liars indeed.} [Al-Munaafiqoon 63:1].
{...وَاللَّـهُ يَشْهَدُ إِنَّ الْمُنَافِقِينَ لَكَاذِبُونَ} المنافقون: 1


Transliteration: waAllahu yashhadu inna almunafiqeena lakathiboona
…and also:
{In their hearts is a disease (of doubt and hypocrisy) and Allah has increased their disease. A painful torment is theirs because they used to tell lies.} [Al-Baqarah 2:10].
{فِي قُلُوبِهِم مَّرَضٌ فَزَادَهُمُ اللَّـهُ مَرَضًا ۖ وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ بِمَا كَانُوا يَكْذِبُونَ} البقرة: 10


Transliteration: Fee quloobihim maradun fazadahumu Allahu maradan walahum AAathabun aleemun bima kanoo yakthiboona
…and also:
{It is only those who believe not in the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) of Allah, who fabricate falsehood, and it is they who are liars.} [An-Nahl 16:105].
{إِنَّمَا يَفْتَرِي الْكَذِبَ الَّذِينَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ بِآيَاتِ اللَّـهِ ۖ وَأُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْكَاذِبُونَ} النحل: 105


Transliteration: Innama yaftaree alkathiba allatheena layuminoona biayati Allahi waolaika humu alkathiboona
A believer can never tell lies because he believes in the signs of Allaah and His Messenger (peace be upon him), and he believes in the Prophet’s saying: “Falsehood leads to Al-Fujoor (i.e. wickedness, evil-doing), and Al-Fujoor leads to the Hellfire, and a man will keep on telling lies until he is written off by Allaah as a liar.” [Al-Bukhari]
«إن الكذب يهدي إلى الفجور، وإن الفجور يهدي إلى النار، وإن الرجل ليكذب، حتى يكتب عند الله كذابا» رواه البخاري
How awful is falsehood and how base is the rank of the liars! Falsehood leads to wickedness, which is the deviation from the straightforward path, which in turn leads to the Fire of Hell, and woe to the denizens of Hell! A liar is mean-spirited, since he is notorious for falsehood in the sight of Allaah. How ugly is the description of falsehood, which is always avoided and feared to be known about among people. How can a person feel any peace of mind while he is branded as a liar in the sight of Allaah? A liar is always doubted by people, who often suspect his statements and transactions and even dispraise him after his death.
In the Qur’aan, Allaah mentions falsehood alongside idolatry when He says that which means: {…So shun the abomination (worshipping) of idol, and shun lying speech (false statements)} [Al-Hajj 22:30].
{...فَاجْتَنِبُوا الرِّجْسَ مِنَ الْأَوْثَانِ وَاجْتَنِبُوا قَوْلَ الزُّورِ} الحج: 30


Transliteration: faijtaniboo alrrijsa mina alawthani waijtaniboo qawla alzzoori
Knowing all this, is it appropriate that a Muslim can adopt falsehood as a guide to his behavior or a methodology for his life? Even the disbelievers in the pre-Islamic era did not foster falsehood as a method of life, or as a means of attaining their goals; when Abu Sufyaan, may Allaah be pleased with him, who was still a disbeliever at the time, was asked by Heraclius the Roman Emperor about Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), he told him the truth, he later recalled this incident saying: “I swear by Allaah that if I did not fear becoming notorious for falsehood, I would have lied about him (i.e., the Prophet peace be upon him).” This was the case of the disbelievers in the pre-Islamic era; they kept aloof from falsehood and felt embarrassed lest falsehood should be ascribed to them. What then is the matter with you believers, who are endowed by Allaah with the perfect religion that enjoins and entices you to be truthful and tells you about its good fruits, and forbids you from falsehood and clarifies its evil consequences? Abu Sufyaan, may Allaah be pleased with him, who was still a disbeliever at that time, kept aloof from being described as a liar, even once, though he knew that there was great benefit for him to tell lies about the Messenger of Allaah (peace be upon him).
Some weak-minded people from the Muslim Nation may satisfy themselves with falsehood convincing themselves that it is lawful for them because of their carelessness, or a false belief that falsehood is lawful as long as it does not lead to usurping the rights of others, or to seek material gain for their enjoyment in this worldly life, or as result of blind imitation of others. All these false excuses are self-deception and delusion of thought. Carelessness as regards falsehood is the epitome of indecency, since telling a lie even only once penetrates the barrier between man and falsehood, bringing him face to face with it.
Like all other sins, falsehood is abhorred by the souls of the believers. However, if it is committed once, it becomes easy for man to commit it again, and if it is committed again, it will be easier for man to commit it over and over, until it becomes a part of one’s instinct and he commits it on purpose, and thus he will be held a liar in the sight of Allaah.
Falsehood is unlawful, even if it does not lead to devouring the rights of others unlawfully. It is not stated in the Book of Allaah or the Sunnah of His Messenger (peace be upon him) that the prohibition of falsehood is contingent on such a condition. Rather, when it is combined with seizing the properties of others unlawfully, the sin will be even graver and its punishment more severe. It is narrated on the authority of 'Abdur-Rahman b. Abu Bakra that his father said: ‘We were in the company of the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) that he observed: “Should I not inform you about the most grievous of the grave sins?” (The Holy Prophet) repeated it three times, and then said: “Associating anyone with Allah, disobedience to parents, false testimony or false utterance.” The Holy Prophet was reclining, then he sat up, and he repeated it so many times that we wished that he should become silent.’ [Muslim]
«كنا عند رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فقال: "ألا أنبئكم بأكبر الكبائر ؟ (ثلاثا) الإشراك بالله، وعقوق الوالدين، وشهادة الزور  (أو قول الزور)." وكان رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم متكئا فجلس. فمازال يكررها حتى قلنا: ليته سكت» رواه مسلم
He (peace be upon him) also said: “He who appropriated the right of a Muslim by (taking a false) oath, Allaah will make the Hellfire incumbent upon him and will declare Paradise forbidden for him.” So a person asked him: “Even if it is for something insignificant, O Messenger of Allaah?” and he (peace be upon him) replied: “(Yes) even if it is (as insignificant) as a twig of the 'araak tree.” [Reported by Muslim]
«من اقتطع حق امرئ مسلم بيمينه، فقد أوجب الله له النار، وحرم عليه الجنة. فقال له رجل: وإن كان شيئا يسير، يا رسول الله؟ قال: وإن قضيبا من أراك» رواه مسلم
A person may tell lies for fun to entertain his companions, and thus become accustomed to telling lies and feel no grievousness in this. It was related in a Hadeeth:
“Woe to one who tells lies to entertain people! Woe to him! Woe to him!” [Declared good by Al-Ablani].  
«ويل لمن يحدث فيكذب؛ ليضحك به القوم! ويل له! ويل له!» حسنه الألباني
Some people may tell lies to small children because they know that such children will not criticize them. However, by doing this they embed lying in their character from a very early age. ‘Abdullaah bin ‘Aamir reported that his mother once called him, promising to give him something, and the Prophet (peace be upon him) heard this, so he said to her: “What will you give him?” She answered: “I will give him some dates.” So he (peace be upon him) said to her: “If you were not to give him (what you promised), it would be recorded as a lie against you.” [Reported by Abu Dawood & declared good by Al-Albani].
«دعتني أمي يوما ورسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قاعد في بيتنا فقالت ها تعال أعطيك فقال لها رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم وما أردت أن تعطيه؟ قالت: أعطيه تمرا، فقال لها رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم: أما إنك لو لم تعطيه شيئا كتبت عليك كذبة» رواه أبو داود وحسنه الألباني
So fear Allaah, O Muslims, with regard to yourselves, your community and your religion! Do you not know that a religion is reflected and represented by its followers? If the Islamic nation is distinguished by falsehood, blind imitation, and seizing of the properties of others unlawfully, then where will the true Islamic characteristics be? If Muslims are to appear with such disgraceful characteristics then is this not a means of keeping people away from the religion of Islaam? This will mean that Muslims will be held in contempt by their enemies, who will feel superior when they realize that the Muslims are adopting their indecencies and bad morals which are condemned by Islaam. What a disgrace for those who followed the way of those destined to ruin and kept themselves away from the path of those on whom Allaah conferred His favors to - the prophets, the trustworthy, the martyrs and the righteous!
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