Characteristics of Faith - I

Characteristics of Faith - I
  • Publish date:11/03/2018
  • Section:Belief
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We all look for happiness and hope for it. Some people may think happiness lies in having a lot of money or in having a high status or a position of power. However, Bilaal, may Allah be pleased with him, saw happiness in faith in Allah The Almighty, as he repeated, “Ahadun Ahad (Allah is One…Allah is One)”, while the polytheists made him lie on the burning sands of Makkah in the hot desert at mid-day, putting a huge stone on his chest, thus making it difficult for him to breathe. This happiness was also seen by Ibn Taymiyyah  may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him as he said, “What can my enemies do to me? My Paradise is in my heart and they cannot take it from me. If they exile me, my exile would be a journey for worship; if they imprison me, my prison would be seclusion; if they kill me, I would die as a martyr as the Book of Allah and the Sunnah (tradition) of His Messenger  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) are in my heart.”

Faith has a certain sweetness that is known only to those who have tasted it. The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said: The one who accepted Allah as a Lord, Islam as a religion and Muhammad as a Messenger, has tasted the sweetness of faith.[Muslim]

The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) also said: There are three qualities by which he who is characterized (with them) will taste the sweetness of faith: that Allah and His Messenger are dearer to him than anything else; that he loves a person purely for the sake of Allah; and that he hates returning to disbelief after Allah has rescued him from it just as he would hate to be cast into the Hellfire.[Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

One righteous man said about his enemies, “If they knew the faith that is in our hearts, they would fight us for it.” Whoever wants happiness in this life should abide by faith; whoever wants happiness in the Hereafter should abide by faith; and whoever wants to be secure should abide by faith.

What is faith?

Linguistically, faith means 'belief', and this meaning is clear in the story of Prophet Yoosuf (Joseph), may Allah exalt his mention. When his brothers returned to their father Ya’qoob (Jacob), may Allah exalt his mention, after putting Yoosuf in the well, they told their father that Yoosuf had been eaten by a wolf and they stained his shirt with blood. However, they felt that their father did not believe them, so they told him (what means): {But you would not have faith in us, even if we were truthful."} [Quran 12:17], meaning you would not believe us. Complete faith is achieved through certainty of the heart, approval of the tongue and submission of the organs. Thus, faith involves both words and deeds: the words of the tongue and heart, and the deeds of the heart and body.

Such faith has certain characteristics that are peculiar to it. These are:

1. Faith is a condition for the acceptance of deeds:

The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) went out with the Companions, may Allah be pleased with them, before the Battle of Badr, and on the way a man who was known for his courage, daring and strength caught up with them. The Companions  may  Allah  be  pleased  with  them were very happy when they saw him. Then the man came close to the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) and said, “I came in order to follow you and win a share of the booty.” The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) asked him: Do you believe in Allah and His Messenger? The man said, “No.” The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said to him: “Then, return, as I will not seek the help of a polytheist.” Thus, the man left. After a while, he returned and said the same words to the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) and the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) told him the same words. After that, the man returned for the third time and said the same words, the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) asked him:Do you believe in Allah and His Messenger?The man said, “Yes.” The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) told him:Go on (join us).[Muslim]

Allah The Almighty Says (what means):

• {And whoever does righteous deeds, whether male or female, while being a believer - those will enter Paradise and will not be wronged, [even as much as] the speck on a date seed.} [Quran 4:124]
• {But whoever desires the Hereafter and exerts the effort due to it while he is a believer - it is those whose effort is ever appreciated [by Allah].} [Quran 17:19]

2. Faith is not by the tongue only:

‘Abdullaah ibn Ubayy ibn Salool, the chief of the hypocrites, used to go to the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) praise him and declare that he believed in Allah and His Messenger; however, after leaving, he would insult the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) and order the hypocrites to disobey Allah The Almighty and His Messenger. The hypocrites showed Islam outwardly and pretended to follow the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) but they concealed disbelief and enmity to Allah The Almighty and His Messenger. Allah The Almighty Says about them (what means):

• {Indeed, the hypocrites will be in the lowest depths of the Fire - and never will you find for them a helper} [Quran 4:145]
• {When the hypocrites come to you, [O Muhammad], they say, "We testify that you are the Messenger of Allah." And Allah knows that you are His Messenger, and Allah testifies that the hypocrites are liars.} [Quran 63:1]

3. Faith motivates man to perform more righteous deeds:

Faith and righteous deeds are like twins and Allah The Almighty mentioned them together in the Quran sixty times. Just as faith is completed by righteous deeds, the latter is proof of the sincerity of faith. The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said: If you see a man praying at the mosque regularly, bear witness that he is a believer.[At-Tirmithi]

The Companions of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) were born in the pre-Islamic environment where drinking intoxicants and becoming addicted to them was considered an indispensable part of the lifestyle. However, when the verse in which Allah The Almighty Says (what means):{O you who have believed, indeed, intoxicants, gambling, [sacrificing on] stone altars [to other than Allah], and divining arrows are but defilement from the work of Satan, so avoid it that you may be successful.} [Quran 5:90] was revealed and Allah The Almighty ordered them to quit drinking intoxicants, they threw the glasses from their hands to obey Allah The Almighty. Some of the Companions, may Allah be pleased with them, even had the glass almost touching their lips, but when the verse was revealed, they spilt it in order to obey the orders of Allah The Almighty. Each of them went home and spilt all the intoxicants that they had, to the extent that the streets of Madeenah were full of the smell of intoxicants for a long period of time.

Thus, faith achieved what empires could not achieve and what they spent billions in order to eliminate. Some empires spent thousands of millions in order to put an end to alcoholism; however, their efforts were in vain.

Characteristics of Faith - II 

Characteristics of Faith-III

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