All praise is due and belongs to Allâh. We praise Him, seek His help and forgiveness and repent to Him. We seek refuge with Allâh from the evils of ourselves and from the wickedness of our own deeds. Whomever that Allâh guides, none can mislead him, and whomever He sends astray, none can guide. I bear witness that there is no deity worthy of worship but Allâh alone with no partner, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger.
( يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ اتَّقُواْ اللّهَ حَقَّ تُقَاتِهِ وَلاَ تَمُوتُنَّ إِلاَّ وَأَنتُم مُّسْلِمُونَ )
(O you who believe, fear Allâh as he should be feared and die not unless you are Muslims) [Al-Imran: 102]
( يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ اتَّقُواْ رَبَّكُمُ الَّذِي خَلَقَكُم مِّن نَّفْسٍ وَاحِدَةٍ وَخَلَقَ مِنْهَا زَوْجَهَا وَبَثَّ مِنْهُمَا رِجَالاً كَثِيرًا وَنِسَاء وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ الَّذِي تَسَاءلُونَ بِهِ وَالأَرْحَامَ إِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ عَلَيْكُمْ رَقِيبًا )
(O people fear your Lord, who created you from a single soul. From it, He created its spouse, and from both of them scattered many men and women. Fear Allâh, by whom you ask one another, and (fear) the wombs (lest you sever its relationship). Allâh is ever watching over you). [An-Nisa: 1].
( يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَقُولُوا قَوْلًا سَدِيدًا * يُصْلِحْ لَكُمْ أَعْمَالَكُمْ وَيَغْفِرْ لَكُمْ ذُنُوبَكُمْ وَمَن يُطِعْ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ فَقَدْ فَازَ فَوْزًا عَظِيمًا )
(O you, who believe, fear Allâh and say sound statements. He will mend your deeds for you and forgive your sins. Whosoever obeys Allâh and His Messenger shall win a great victory) [Al-Ahzab: 70-71].
Slaves of Allâh !
Allâh created mankind to worship Him and to be dutiful to Him. He obliged them to obey Him alone with no partner and no one else, as Allâh, the most High says,
( يَـٰٓأَيُّہَا ٱلنَّاسُ ٱعۡبُدُواْ رَبَّكُمُ ٱلَّذِى خَلَقَكُمۡ وَٱلَّذِينَ مِن قَبۡلِكُمۡ لَعَلَّكُمۡ تَتَّقُونَ )
O mankind! Worship your Lord (Allâh), Who created you and those who were before you so that you may become pious [Al-Baqarah: 21],
He the most Purified also said,
( إنَّ هَـٰذِهِۦۤ أُمَّتُكُمۡ أُمَّةً۬ وَٲحِدَةً۬ وَأَنَا۟ رَبُّڪُمۡ فَٱعۡبُدُونِ )
Truly! This, your Ummah [Shariah or religion (Islâmic Monotheism)] is one religion, and I am your Lord, therefore worship Me (Alone) [Al-Anbiyaa: 92].
Our Lord Almighty further explained that He did not create the creatures but to worship Him. In this regard, He the most Glorified and Exalted, said,
( وَمَا خَلَقۡتُ ٱلۡجِنَّ وَٱلۡإِنسَ إِلَّا لِيَعۡبُدُونِ )
And I (Allâh) created not the jinn and mankind except that they should worship Me (Alone) [Ad-Dhariyaat: 56].
Hence, the worship of Allâh is the way to all good and success in this world and the hereafter.
The essence of worship as Ibn Taymiyyah, May Allâh the Almighty, bestow His mercy upon him, said, “Is to do everything that Allâh loves and is pleased with, with respect to both outward and inward words and deeds “
So, he that worships Allâh as He deserves shall be guided to the right path of Allâh and shall realize the wisdom for which Allâh has created him. It is by this that eternal success and prosperity are attained. It is on this account that penalty and accountability will be based. It is the reason for the distinction between grades. It is by it that a believer would attain the dignity and pleasure of Allâh , and gain earthly happiness and that of the Hereafter. On the contrary, the ungodly will have the divine punishment in the Hereafter meted on him, for not complying with the essence of worship in his lifetime, because it is a behavior for distinguishing between he that worshipped Allâh devotedly and he that worshipped his desires, and between those who knew the path to happiness and those who knew the path to misery. A worshipper of Allâh will have all his entire life happier, and the most wonderful things in his life will be the pleasure he takes and gets from the types of worship. As for he that disobeyed his Lord, became addicted to debauchery and chose perpetual seduction, he has in fact chosen the life of misery for himself, unless Allâh , the most High, rescues him out of His infinite mercy, and then drives him to the path of success, to choose the path of servitude to Allâh, the most High and humility before Him. When he treads upon that path with every desire, eagerness and diligence, he would find success, and see the wideness of the gate to the mercy of the most Merciful Lord, to those who turn to Him. Allâh the Almighty said,
( قُلۡ يَـٰعِبَادِىَ ٱلَّذِينَ أَسۡرَفُواْ عَلَىٰٓ أَنفُسِهِمۡ لَا تَقۡنَطُواْ مِن رَّحۡمَةِ ٱللَّهِۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ يَغۡفِرُ ٱلذُّنُوبَ جَمِيعًاۚ إِنَّهُ ۥ هُوَ ٱلۡغَفُورُ ٱلرَّحِيمُ )
Say O My slaves, who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allâh, verily Allâh forgives all sins. Truly, He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful [Az-Zumar: 53].
Moreover, worship, O believers, is represented in several types, as follows:
First: Worships of the heart: These acts of worship occur in the heart such as the fear and love of Allâh, the most Purified, and sensing His greatness. This is the basis of all acts of worship, whose sound leads to the soundness of the rest of the acts of worship. It is their basis, and according to the extent of realizing it shall be the materialization of other acts of worship, and likewise its weakness weakens others as well.
Second: The physical acts of worship: These acts of worship are carried out physically, through bodily limbs and faculties. So, the slave remembers his Lord with his tongue, prays or fasts or performs pilgrimage using the rest of his faculties and limbs.
Third: Financial acts of worship: People vary in these acts of worship in terms of capability and incapability. So, they need to understand what the human being should spend, whether with regards to the financial obligations of Zakah, or those which are lesser such as charity, and so on. People vary in their financial capacity, and what they must do.
There are acts of worship that bring all these types under one fold (the heart, physical, and financial worships) in the same essence, such as Hajj and Umrah, and others.
It is part of Allâh ‘s test for His slaves, that He tested them by their souls that are inclined towards evil, and some of the demons amongst mankind and the jinn; to adorn for them the opposition of the commandment of their Lord and turn them away from it. Hence anyone that seeks to survive in this world and the other should ask for the assistance of his Lord to make his heart firm on the truth, so that he may act according to the wish of Allâh, treading the path to achieve his goal and realize his end.
Due to Man’s great need for the help of his Lord, Allâh collected and combined in His book between worship and seeking His aid as He said,
( إِيَّاكَ نَعۡبُدُ وَإِيَّاكَ نَسۡتَعِينُ )
You (Alone) we worship, and You (Alone) we ask for help [Al-Fatihah: 5].
Ibn Taymiyyah, May Allâh bestow mercy on him, says, “The slave of Allâh is at all times in need of the assistance of Allâh in obedience to Him, and affirming his heart.
Ibn Rajab, May Allâh bestow mercy on him, says, “Hence, the slave of Allâh needs to seek the assistance of Allâh in executing the commandments and avoiding the prohibitions and to exercise patience over all destinies, in this life, at death and after death during the horrors of the barzakh (life between this world and the hereafter) and on the Day of Judgment, and no one has the ability to assist in doing that except Allâh the Almighty. So whoever, fulfills seeking assistance from Him to do all that, He would help him. “
The essence of seeking help from Allâh, O believers is for the slave to ask for help from Allâh, the most High, in all affairs of his religion, this world and the hereafter. The Prophet (May the blessings and peace of Allâh be upon him), has guided us to that, as narrated in the hadith of Ibn Abbas, may Allâh be pleased with them: “If you seek help, seek help from Allâh ” (At-Tirmidhi).
The slave of Allâh always stands in need of his Lord, the most Purified, because he is helpless and he has no might except through Allâh , he is poor and can’t do without Allâh , and he is weak and has no strength except from Allâh .
In all his conditions he is in need of guidance and assistance. He needs Allâh to make him firm upon the truth that pleases his Lord. He needs Allâh to forgive him his sins and shortcomings, cover his flaws and defects, turn away from him evils and tribulations. He is truly in need of his Creator, the most Glorified and Exalted in every moment, because his demands and needs spin around the clock and the hours of the day and night without stopping, and he owns nothing but to seek assistance from Allâh , the Strong, who is capable of everything, in Whose hands lies the achievement of all benefit and warding off of all harm. None brings about good but He, and none wards off sins or evils but He, the most Purified. The Almighty said,
( وَإِن يَمۡسَسۡكَ ٱللَّهُ بِضُرٍّ۬ فَلَا ڪَاشِفَ لَهُ ۥۤ إِلَّا هُوَۖ وَإِن يَمۡسَسۡكَ بِخَيۡرٍ۬ فَهُوَ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَىۡءٍ۬ قَدِيرٌ )
And if Allâh touches you with harm, none can remove it but He, and if He touches you with good, then He is Able to do all things [Al-An’am: 17].
The Almighty Allâh also said,
( وَإِن يَمۡسَسۡكَ ٱللَّهُ بِضُرٍّ۬ فَلَا ڪَاشِفَ لَهُ ۥۤ إِلَّا هُوَۖ وَإِن يُرِدۡكَ بِخَيۡرٍ۬ فَلَا رَآدَّ لِفَضۡلِهِۦۚ يُصِيبُ بِهِۦ مَن يَشَآءُ مِنۡ عِبَادِهِۦۚ وَهُوَ ٱلۡغَفُورُ ٱلرَّحِيمُ )
And if Allâh touches you with hurt, there is none who can remove it but He; and if He intends any good for you, there is none who can repel His Favour which He causes it to reach whomsoever of His slaves He wills. And He is the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful [Yunus: 107].
With respect to people’s relationship with Almighty Allâh’s saying:
( إِيَّاكَ نَعۡبُدُ وَإِيَّاكَ نَسۡتَعِينُ )
You (Alone) we worship, and You (Alone) we ask for help
their condition is as follows:
The first: People of goodness and righteousness. Such are the ones Allâh guides to attain faith and good deeds, trust in Allâh the most High, and seeking aid from Him. They are those Allâh has guided to the goodness that He wishes for the people of that Quranic verse. They are at the highest levels, as Allâh the most High, says,
( إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ قَالُواْ رَبُّنَا ٱللَّهُ ثُمَّ ٱسۡتَقَـٰمُواْ تَتَنَزَّلُ عَلَيۡهِمُ ٱلۡمَلَـٰٓٮِٕڪَةُ أَلَّا تَخَافُواْ وَلَا تَحۡزَنُواْ وَأَبۡشِرُواْ بِٱلۡجَنَّةِ ٱلَّتِى كُنتُمۡ تُوعَدُونَ )
Verily, those who say: “Our Lord is Allâh (Alone),” and then they stand firm, on them the angels will descend (at the time of their death) (saying): “Fear not, nor grieve! But receive the glad tidings of Paradise which you have been promised! [Fussilat: 30].
Second: People with acts of worship and obedience that show that they are worthy of it, but they have been deprived of seeking the help of the Creator, the most Purified, and they thought they are the best. They have indeed committed a kind of wrong assumption by believing such, because there is no good except through the assistance of Almighty Allâh , and trusting and relying upon Him. Such people need to be reminded, advised and guided to what is good for them, and explain to them that they have overlooked very important thing in the religion of Allâh . Though they worship Allâh , but they hope for goodness, righteousness and success and prosperity from others besides Allâh , like one asking the dead, or drawing closer to the creature hoping to grant him some benefit or ward off some harm from him. Thus they are guilty of practical polytheism, and have confused obedience with acts of practical polytheism. Allâh has said,
( وَمَا يُؤۡمِنُ أَڪۡثَرُهُم بِٱللَّهِ إِلَّا وَهُم مُّشۡرِكُونَ )
And most of them believe not in Allâh except that they attribute partners unto Him [Yusuf: 106].
Third: Those who console themselves, and claim that they rely on Allâh and repose trust in Him in seeking for their livelihood, but they in fact have said that for their mundane fortunes void of the worship of Allâh . They rather worship this world, and they only took refuge in Allâh just to request for their needs to be granted. Allâh may grant them out of the pleasures of this world, but they would have no share in the hereafter,
( مَن كَانَ يُرِيدُ حَرۡثَ ٱلۡأَخِرَةِ نَزِدۡ لَهُ ۥ فِى حَرۡثِهِۦۖ وَمَن كَانَ يُرِيدُ حَرۡثَ ٱلدُّنۡيَا نُؤۡتِهِۦ مِنۡہَا وَمَا لَهُ ۥ فِى ٱلۡأَخِرَةِ مِن نَّصِيبٍ )
Whosoever desires (by his deeds) the reward of the Hereafter, We give him increase in his reward, and whosoever desires the reward of this world (by his deeds), We give him thereof (what is decreed for him), and he has no portion in the Hereafter [As-Shura: 20].
Fourth: Some people are arrogant towards Allâh , the most High, and refuse to put trust in Him, or seek His aid. Such did not actually believe in Him right from the onset, even though they feed from His livelihood, then they deny His bounty and worship others besides Him. They feel pompous to invoke their Lord for any affair of their needs. So whoever dwells in such condition is among those Allâh , the most High, has described as those who are arrogant to worship Him, those on whose account He said,
( وَقَالَ رَبُّڪُمُ ٱدۡعُونِىٓ أَسۡتَجِبۡ لَكُمۡۚ إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ يَسۡتَكۡبِرُونَ عَنۡ عِبَادَتِى سَيَدۡخُلُونَ جَهَنَّمَ دَاخِرِينَ )
And your Lord said: “Invoke Me, I will respond to your (invocation). Verily! Those who scorn My worship [i.e. do not invoke Me, and do not believe in My Oneness] they will surely enter Hell in humiliation! [Ghafir: 60].
May Allâh bless me and you in the Glorious Qur’an, and benefit me and you, with the verses and wise reminder it contains. May Allâh guide us to every goodness and avert from us all evil.
I said what you have heard, and I ask Allâh to forgive every sin for me and you and the other Muslims. So, ask for His forgiveness, for He is the Oft-Forgiving, the Most Merciful.
All praise is due and belongs to Allâh , the Lord of the worlds. The good end shall be for the righteous, and no aggression except on the oppressors.
Slaves of Allâh!
The slave needs to combine between the meanings of (You alone we worship) and (You alone we ask for help) [Al-Fatihah: 5], because they are the cause of success in this world and the Hereafter. Although that will only be achieved by accomplishing devotion of worship to Allâh the most Purified, and reposing trust in Him, showing desperation in His help by seeking His help, because with these man surrenders to his Lord, the most Purified, and attains the peak of humility and submissiveness before Him, the most Glorified and Exalted.
Ibn al-Qayyim, May Allâh ‘s mercy be with him, says, (“You alone we worship” drives away hypocrisy, and “You alone we ask for help” drives away arrogance). Moreover, owing to the importance of seeking the help of Allâh for performing acts of obedience, we read them every day in the Opening Chapter of the Qur’an (Al-Fatihah). Ibn Al-Qayyim, May Allâh bestow His mercy on him said: “I pondered over the most useful prayer and I found that it is to ask for help to obey Allâh and then I saw it in the Opening Chapter of the Qur’an (Al-Fatihah).
That is why it was part of the du’a of the Messenger of Allâh , (May the blessings and peace of Allâh be upon him), according to his advice to Mu’adh bin Jabal, May Allâh be pleased with him: “O Mu’adh, By Allâh , I love you and Mu’adh said: ‘I ransom you with my father and mother, and by Allâh , I love you, O Messenger of Allâh Then the messenger of Allâh said, I advise you not to miss supplicating after every Salah (prayer) saying: ‘Allâh umma a’inni ‘ala dhikrika wa shukrika, wa husni ‘ibadatika,’ (O Allâh , help me remember You, express gratitude to You and worship You in the best manner)” (Ahmad).
The Prophet (May the blessings and peace of Allâh be upon him), used to advise Ibn Abbas, may Allâh be pleased with them, and say: “If you ask, ask Allâh , and if you seek help, seek the help of Allâh ” (At-Tirmidhi). This indicates that the path to dignity, strength and triumph can only be achieved by seeking the help of Allâh , the most Purified and High, because anyone that seeks the help of Allâh , the most High, has sought the help of the Great, sought the help of the Able One, and sought the help of the God who is capable of everything. It is from here that reassurance comes in, absolute pleasure sets in, by relying on One who possess all the good, and it is He that grants success. While stating the story of Shu’aib, peace be upon him, Allâh, the Almighty said,
( وَمَا تَوۡفِيقِىٓ إِلَّا بِٱللَّهِۚ عَلَيۡهِ تَوَكَّلۡتُ وَإِلَيۡهِ أُنِيبُ)
And my guidance cannot come except from Allâh, in Him I trust and unto Him I repent [Hud: 88].
O Allâh ! Make us among Your righteous slaves, and help us remember You, express gratitude to You and worship You in the best manner, and grant us all the best, and turn away from us all evil.
Invoke prayers and blessings of Allâh upon the one Allâh, the Most Exalted and Glorified, has commanded you to do so when He said,
( إِنَّ اللَّهَ وَمَلَائِكَتَهُ يُصَلُّونَ عَلَى النَّبِيِّ يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا صَلُّوا عَلَيْهِ وَسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا )
Allâh sends His Salah (Graces, Honours, Blessings, Mercy, etc.) on the Prophet (Muhammad) and also His angels too (ask Allâh to bless and forgive him). O you who believe! Send your Salah on (ask Allâh to bless) him (Muhammad), and (you should) greet him with the Islamic way of greeting [Al-Ahzab: 56].