Obligations for Da'wah (inviting others to Islam)
Fatwa No: 85108

Question

With reference to Ayah No. 108 of Surah Yusuf, Ayah No. 110 of Surah Aal-Imran, Hadith: "Balligho Anni Walaw Ayah" and Hadith: "Al-Ulamoo warathat-ul-Anbiya", I want to ask the following questions: -1) Is the work of calling towards Allah (Da'wah and Tableegh) obligatory on every Muslim who is in Ummah of Hazrat Muhammad (Peace be upon him) or it is obligatory only on the Ulama of this Ummah?2) Will every Muslim who is in Ummah of Hazrat Muhammad (Peace be upon him) be asked on the Day of Judgment about the Kafirs all over the world as to whether he/she has done work of Da'wah upon them or not just as he will be asked about his prayers, fasts and other obligations?3) Is it true to say that this Ummah is created to perform the work of Da'wah and Tableegh after the end of Prophethood upon Hazrat Muhammad (peace be upon him)?4) What is the difference between Amr Bil Maru'f /Nahi Anil Munkar and Da'wah/Tableegh?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger. We ask Allaah to exalt his mention as well as that of his family and all his companions.

Allaah addresses the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) and all his followers till the Day of Judgment saying: {Say (O Muhammad): "This is my way; I invite unto Allaah (i.e. to the Oneness of Allaah - Islamic Monotheism) with sure knowledge, I and whosoever follows me (also must invite others to Allaah, i.e. to the Oneness of Allaah - Islamic Monotheism) with sure knowledge.} [12:108]

It is recorded by al-Bukhari and Muslim that Allaah's Messenger  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "Convey from me even one verse". Another Hadeeth reads: "A present one has to inform an absentee."

Thus, we state that Da'wah (inviting others to Islam) is an obligation for every Muslim, but this is different according to people's situations, faculties and their scientific, social and political qualifications.

No doubt that the greatest responsibility is upon rulers, scholars and those persons who are in authority. Allaah says (interpretation of meaning): {Those (Muslim rulers) who, if We give them power in the land, (they) order for Iqamat-as-Salat [i.e. to perform the five compulsory congregational Salat (prayers)], to pay the Zakat and they enjoin Al-Ma'ruf (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do), and forbid Al-Munkar (i.e. disbelief, polytheism and all that Islam has forbidden) [i.e. they make the Qur'an as the law of their country in all the spheres of life]. And with Allaah rests the end of (all) matters (of creatures).} [22: 41]

Then, everyone is responsible for individual obligations, and al-Amanah (the trust, moral responsibility and Divine obligations) which includes Da'wah to Allaah and His religion. This differs from one person to another. However, such an obligation (Da'wah to Islam) is according to one's ability. Allaah says (interpretation of meaning): {Allaah burdens not a person beyond his scope. …} [2: 286], {… Allaah puts no burden on any person beyond what He has given him. …} [65: 7]

By ending revelation and sealing Prophethood with Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) it becomes each and every Muslim's duty to assume the duty of Da'wah to Islam and to spread its teaching among people. So, bearers of the Islamic Message are required to convey this message to all people and to state the universality of Islam.

Allaah says (interpretation of meaning): {And We have not sent you (O Muhammad) except as a giver of glad tidings and a warner to all mankind, …} [34: 28], {And We have sent you (O Muhammad) not but as a mercy for the 'Alameen (mankind, jinn and all that exists).} [21: 107]

As for your question concerning the difference between enjoining good and forbidding bad and Da'wah, we state that Da'wah is more comprehensive than enjoining good and forbidding bad. One who practices Da'wah to Allaah is, in fact, practicing enjoining good. If one invites or orders some people to perform prayer or fast in Ramadan or to avoid something wrong, this is a special task, and then, a form of Da'wah. So, every Muslim should be a Da'iyah (one who invites others to Islam).

Allaah knows best.

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