Needs correct understanding of Qur'an and Seerah
Fatwa No: 89799

  • Fatwa Date:20-4-2005 - Rabee' Al-Awwal 12, 1426
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While talking with an scholar about the Da'wa he said that, Ulamah have looked into the life of Rasulullah [sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam] and concluded that Da'wa to Muslims was always a priority over non-Muslims. He has given me the following reference, in the opening verses of Surah Abasa, Allaah Ta'ala emphasized to Nabi (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam, that you should always give preference to Muslims over non-Muslims. Is he right?


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.


The deduction from the verses that you mentioned is not correct. Allaah reprimanded the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) because he was engaged in calling a non-Muslim who appeared to be negligent about the guidance but the Prophet desired his guidance, while he neglected a person who came earnestly seeking guidance. Imaam Al-Baghawi may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said in his Tafseer: 'Ibn 'Abbaas  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him said interpreting the following  verses (which means) {As for him who thinks himself self-sufficient}, that it means self-sufficient from Allaah and from guidance because of the wealth he has; {To him you attend}, meaning you attend to him and listen to him attentively; {What does it matter to you if he will not become pure}, means he will not believe and will not be guided, you are only a warner; {But as to him who came to you running}, means Ibn Um Maktoom  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him; {While he fears [Allaah],}, i.e. afraid of Allaah and His Punishment, {From him you are neglectful and divert your attention to another}, meaning you are distracted from him and neglectful of him.'

What takes priority over calling Muslims and non-Muslims - when it is not possible to combine both - depends on the conditions of Da'wa, it might be that calling Muslims is in priority over calling non-Muslims, for instance the Muslims might go to a caller to Islam and try to benefit from him, while non-Muslims neglect him and avoid him. On the other hand, it might be that calling non-Muslims takes priority in other cases when they do not generally turn away from Islam and when the probability of them turning away is less, and they listen to the caller, so in this case it is hoped that they would become Muslims and he would save them from Hellfire; in such case they come in priority over Muslims.

Allaah knows best.

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