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Sheikh Al-Issa in Arafah's Sermon: Allaah Blessed You by Making It Easy for You to Carry out This Obligation. Thus, Ensure Following the Guidance of Your Prophet
Published in Saudi Press Agency on 08 - 07 - 2022

Secretary General of the Muslim World League (MWL) and Member of the Council of Senior Scholars Sheikh Dr. Mohammed bin Abdulkharim Al-Issa called in Arafah sermon he delivered at Namirah Mosque in the Holy Site of Arafat for praising Allaah who made the obligation of Hajj easy this year.
He urged all Muslims in all places to fulfilling Allaah's Commands and Avoiding His prohibitions in order to attain victory, salvation, and happiness in both this world and the hereafter.
Following is Arafah sermon:
"In the name of Allaah, the Possessor of Limitless Mercy, the Bestower of Mercy
All praise belongs to Allaah: the All-Knowing, the All-Acquainted. There is nothing like Him, and He is the All-Hearing, the All-Seeing. Allaah is the only One who deserves to be worshipped by the inhabitants of the heavens and the inhabitants of the Earth. He has complete knowledge of everything you conceal and everything you reveal. He also has complete knowledge about all the deeds you perform. All that is stored away in what is imperceptible to us lies with Allaah alone. None has complete knowledge about that except Him, and He knows everything that the land and the sea contain. Not a single leaf falls without Him knowing. There is neither a single seed buried in the dark depths of the earth, nor anything moist or dry, except that a Clear Record contains it.
I testify that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah. He knows everything that people conceal within themselves, as well as all that is even more hidden. Nothing throughout the Earth or the heavens is concealed from Him. Indeed, the only One you are to worship is Allaah: the One besides whom none has any right to be worshipped. He encompasses all things with His knowledge.
I further testify that Muhammad is Allaah's worshipping servant and Messenger. Allaah described him by telling him, ((And Allaah taught you what you had no prior knowledge of, and the bounty that Allaah bestowed upon you has truly been immense)) [4:113]. May Allaah grant abundant commendation and protection to His Messenger as well as to the Messenger's family, Companions, and followers.
I say to all who have come for Hajj, as well as all Muslims in all places: You are to protect yourselves from the punishment of Allaah - the Most Exalted - [by fulfilling His commands and avoiding His prohibitions]. When you do that, you would attain victory, salvation, and happiness in both this world and the hereafter. Allaah - the Most Exalted - said, ((Had they accepted and complied with the truth, and protected themselves from Allaah's punishment, they would have been certain that the reward from their Lord is best. If they only knew.)) [2:103]. Allaah - the Most Exalted - also said, ((And you must all protect yourselves from Allaah's punishment, and know that Allaah is with those who protect themselves from His punishment.)) [2:194]. He further said, ((And you must all protect yourselves from Allaah's punishment, and know that Allaah has complete knowledge about absolutely everything.)) [2:231].
Furthermore, how could we fail to protect ourselves from Allaah's punishment, or fail to devote all worship to Him alone, when He is the only One who ultimately brings about benefits and lets harms occur? Allaah - the Most Exalted - said, ((And if Allaah afflicts you with any type of hardship, there is none who can alleviate it except Him; and if He wants to grant you any type of blessing, there is none who can withhold His favour from reaching you. Among His servants, He causes whomever He wills to experience both good and bad, and He is the Most Forgiving, the Bestower of Mercy.)) [10:107].
In making a connection between acquiring knowledge and protecting oneself from Allaah's punishment, Allaah said, ((And you must continue to protect yourselves from Allaah's punishment. In addition, Allaah is the One who grants you knowledge, and Allaah has complete knowledge about absolutely everything.)) [2:282]. Furthermore, part of seeking protection against Allaah's punishment is complying with Allaah's call to sincerely devote all worship to Him alone and not direct any form of worship whatsoever to other than Him. He said, ((Mankind, worship your Lord who created you and created those prior to you, so that you would be people who protect yourselves from His punishment. He is the One who has made the Earth a resting place for you, made the sky a canopy, sent down water from the sky, and brought forth with that water various fruits as provision for you. Therefore, do not set up rivals to Allaah in worship when you know that He alone is the One who has done all of those things.)) [2:21-22].
The preceding is what all of the Prophets called people to. The Prophet Ibraaheem (may Allaah grant him continued protection) told his people, (("Worship Allaah alone and protect yourselves from His punishment. That is best for you. If you only knew.")) [29:16]. Allaah sent down scriptures, and He commissioned Prophets and Messengers to teach their peoples and call them to devote all worship to Allaah alone. Each one of the Prophets told the people to whom he was sent, (("My people, you must worship Allaah alone. There is no other god who deserves your worship except Him. Will you not then protect yourselves from His punishment?")). [7:65, 23:23].
Thus, a basic principle established was that devoting all worship to Allaah is the meaning of the testimony "laa ilaaha illallaah" (none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah). Allaah - the Most Exalted - stated, ((And Allaah said to mankind, "You must not take for yourselves two gods in worship. Allaah is indeed only One God. Therefore, you must have complete reverential fear of Me alone." To Allaah alone belongs everything throughout the heavens and the Earth and it is necessary to devote all worship and complete obedience to Him alone. Is there anyone else whose punishment you are required to protect yourselves from by being completely dutiful towards them? Every blessing you have is from Allaah. Then, when harm touches you, you cry out to Him for help. But when He removes the harm from you, there are those among you who worship others besides their Lord. As a result of that, they ungratefully deny the favours which We - Allaah - have bestowed upon them. Thus, you may enjoy yourselves in this life, but you will eventually come to know the consequences.)) [16:51-55].
The combination of the testimony that only Allaah is to be worshipped, along with the testimony that Muhammad (may Allaah grant him commendation and protection) is Allaah's Messenger, provides the means to pleasing Allaah, and to attaining salvation on the Day of Return to Allaah. In addition, the aforementioned testimony of Messengership entails affirming the truth of everything we were informed about by the Prophet Muhammad, complying with his directives, and worshipping Allaah according to the teachings that he brought (may Allaah grant him commendation and protection). Allaah - who is perfect in every way - said, ((Prophet of Allaah, We have sent you as a witness, a bearer of glad tidings, a warner, a caller to Allaah by His permission, and a brilliantly shining lamp.)) [33:45-46].
Together, the foregoing two testimonies are the first pillar of Islaam, as the Prophet (may Allaah grant him commendation and protection) said, "Islaam has been built upon five: testifying that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah, establishing obligatory prayer, giving obligatory charity, fasting Ramadaan, and performing Hajj at the Ka'bah if able to do so."
The second pillar of Islaam is obligatory prayer. Allaah - the Most Exalted - said, ((And establish prayer as prescribed. Indeed, prayer in that manner prevents people from immorality and wrongdoing. Furthermore, mention of Allaah is greatest and Allaah has complete knowledge of all that you do.)) [29:45].
The third pillar of Islaam, obligatory charity, is mentioned in conjunction with obligatory prayer at many points in the Book of Allaah. Obligatory charity involves a wealthy person giving a small portion of his wealth to the types of recipients whom Islaam's teachings designate as eligible. This charity is part of what shows Islaam's merits with respect to ensuring the welfare of society and contributing to what benefits the public at large.
The other pillars of Islaam are fasting the lunar month of Ramadaan and performing Hajj at Allaah's Sacred House. Allaah - the Most Exalted - said, ((And performance of Hajj at this House is an obligation people must fulfil for Allaah if able to do so.)) [3:97].
I say to all who are performing Hajj: Allaah has blessed you by making it easy for you to carry out this obligation; thus, ensure that you fulfil it while following the guidance of your Prophet (may Allaah grant him commendation and protection) who said, "You must learn your rites of Hajj and 'Umrah from me." In addition, Allaah - the Most Exalted - said, ((Hajj is in the well-known months. Thus, those who intend to perform Hajj during them must avoid intercourse and its precursors, disobedience to Allaah, and wrongful argumentation while performing Hajj. And whatever good you do, Allaah indeed knows it. Additionally, you must take provisions for yourselves, and the best provision is most certainly protecting yourselves from Allaah's punishment. Thus, people of understanding, ensure that you protect yourselves from My punishment.)) [2:197].
The Prophet (may Allaah grant him commendation and protection) had also clarified other levels of this religion. The level of Ihsaan entails that you worship Allaah as though you are seeing Him; and even though you do not see Him in this world, He certainly sees you. There are also the pillars of Eemaan, which entail that you have sound beliefs about Allaah, His angels, His Books, His Messengers, the Last Day, and His preordainment whether its results are perceived to be good or bad.
I say to all who have come to perform Hajj at Allaah's Sanctified House, as well as all Muslims in all places: I counsel all of you, as well as myself, to seek protection against the punishment of Allaah - the Most Exalted - [by fulfilling His commands and avoiding His prohibitions], since that is the best provision to prepare. I also counsel all of you, as well as myself, to hasten to perform acts of goodness. Allaah - the Most Exalted - said, ((And hasten to attain forgiveness from your Lord; and to be admitted to Paradise, the expanse of which is like the expanse of the heavens and the Earth. It has been prepared for those who protect themselves from Allaah's punishment.)) [57:21]. Allaah - who is perfect in every way - also said, ((And do all forms of good in order for you to be successful)) [22:77].
Servants of Allaah, you must also realize that hastening to do good things includes being keen to comply with the values taught by Islaam: values that soundly mold the conduct of a Muslim and refine them in the best way. Those were embodied by our esteemed Prophet (may Allaah grant him commendation and protection), whom his Lord - the Most Majestic and Exalted - described by saying, ((And you are most certainly established upon an admirable standard of conduct)) [68:4]. That Prophet (may Allaah grant him commendation and protection) was the one who had said, "Indeed, those most beloved to me among you, and those who will be nearest to me in rank on the Day of Resurrection, are the ones who have the soundest conduct."
In a general sense, sound conduct comprises values that are shared by all people in general, and they are respected by Muslims and others as well. That conduct entails traversing a sound course in words and deeds. Allaah - the Most Exalted - said, ((You must speak the best of words to people)) [2:83], and He also said, ((Righteous deeds are not equal to misdeeds. Do good to people in exchange for them having done wrong to you. When you do so, you will find that if there was animosity between you and someone else, he will become like a beloved friend.)) [41:34].
With respect to dealing with insolence from others, Allaah - who is perfect in every way - said, ((Accept the deeds and conduct that people readily offer, instruct people to do what is correct, and turn away from those who behave ignorantly.)) [7:199]. Allaah - who is perfect in every way - also said, ((Thus, continue to persevere. The promise of Allaah is the truth, and do not let people who have no certainty divert you.)) [30:60]. In other words, beware of letting them involve you in argumentative exchanges and the consequences that ensue.
Due to the well-grounded values that a Muslim must have, he is not to give any mind to those who are insolent, have ulterior motives, or seek to obstruct him. He is to bear in mind the statement of Allaah, the Most Exalted, ((And when they hear wrongful words, they withdraw from that and they say, "We have our deeds and you have your deeds. You will remain in safety from hearing or experiencing anything harmful from us. We do not seek to follow the course of the ignorant.")) [28:55]. A Muslim is also to realize that persisting in argumentation with such people makes their presence more prominent, supports their interests, and makes them happy; in fact, many of them are dependent upon that argumentation. Nonetheless, it must also be borne in mind that dangers of deception are still to be exposed, and blatant offenses are to be confronted, but all of that is to be done according to the wisdom prescribed by Islaam.
Dear worshippers performing Hajj at Allaah's Sanctified House; dear Muslims: Among the values taught by Islaam are avoiding all that leads to dissent, animosity, or division; and instead, ensuring that our interactions are dominated by harmony and compassion.
These values come at the head of what adhering to the Qur'aan and Sunnah means. Allaah - the Most Majestic and Exalted - said, ((All of you must adhere to the Qur'aan and Sunnah, and you must not be divided among yourselves)) [3:103]. It is that unity, brotherhood, and cooperation which constitutes a fortification of safety that protects our Ummah and its togetherness, and also contributes to maintaining sound interactions with others.
The preceding serves to underscore that Islaam has an encompassing spirit whose goodness extends to all of humanity, and its esteemed Prophet (may Allaah grant him commendation and protection) is the one who said, "The best of people are those who benefit others most." Thus, the teachings of Islaam have an inherent humanitarian nature whose standards do not become compromised, and whose foundations do not become altered. In light of that, each individual among you should love what is good for all people, and strive to bring their hearts together.
It is by way of those values that the light of Islaam spread and reached people throughout the regions of our world. Individuals who remained true in their promise to Allaah successively continued to convey this good. Consequently, this guidance bore soundly directed followers who traversed the path of Islaam. The well-grounded scholars of Islaam also have a very positive effect in tirelessly bearing the responsibility of clarifying the truth, and that includes confronting misconceptions and incorrect understandings regarding Islaam.
I say to all who have come to perform Hajj at Allaah's Sanctified House: one of the settings in which supplications are answered is this very setting that you are now in. The Prophet (may Allaah grant him commendation and protection) was present at 'Arafah where he continued to mention Allaah and supplicate Him after delivering a sermon and praying Thuhr and 'Asr combined and shortened to two units each, with one athaan and two iqaamahs. He remained in 'Arafah until the sun had set, then he calmly proceeded to Muzdalifah while also instructing his Companions to remain calm and composed. In Muzdalifah, he prayed Maghrib as three units, and 'Ishaa' as two units. He spent the night in Muzdalifah, prayed Fajr there, and remained seated there mentioning Allaah until the sky became quite bright. He then proceeded to Minaa and pelted the third Jamrah with seven pebbles, then offered his sacrifice and had his head shaved. That constituted a preliminary exit from the sate of Ihraam. He then proceeded to Makkah, performed Tawaaf, and returned to Minaa where he spent the Nights of Tashreeq. While in Minaa, he mentioned Allaah much and, each day there, he pelted all of the Jamaraat. He pelted the first Jamrah with seven pebbles, then did the same for the second, and he supplicated after pelting those. He then pelted the third Jamrah with seven pebbles as well. For those who had legitimate excuses, he granted a concession to not spend the nights in Minaa. He stayed there until the thirteenth of Thul-Hijjah, and he permitted leaving on the twelfth. After completing the rites of Hajj, he performed a farewell Tawaaf before departing from Makkah.
Dear Muslims, seize the opportunities of this majestic time: the Day of 'Arafah, which is the day on which Allaah - the Most Exalted - sent down His statement, ((Today, I have perfected your religion for you, I have completed My favour to you, and I am pleased with Islaam as a religion for you)) [5:3]. It is the same day about which the Prophet (may Allaah grant him commendation and protection) said, "There is no day on which Allaah frees more servants from the hellfire than the Day of 'Arafah. Allaah indeed draws near and then boasts to the angels about them." Therefore, supplicate Allaah much since He has promised that He will respond to your supplications. Allaah - the Most Exalted - stated, ((And your Lord said: Call upon Me and I will respond to you.)) [40:60]. Allaah also said to His Messenger, ((When My servants ask you about Me, inform them that I am most certainly near. I respond to the prayer of the supplicant when he calls upon Me.)) [2:186].
O Allaah, accept Hajj from all who have come to perform it; respond to their supplications; facilitate matters for them; forgive their sins; and enable them to return to their homelands in safety, having earned Your reward, and having attained high standing with You. And among them, there are those who say, "Our Lord, grant us good in this world, grant us good in the hereafter, and save us from the torment of the hellfire."
O Allaah, set matters right for the people of Islaam, rectify matters between them, spread knowledge and goodness throughout them, make their children righteous individuals, bless them in their provisions, and admit them to Paradise.
O Allaah, direct, guide, and support the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman ibn 'Abdil-'Azeez, as well as his Crown Prince Muhammad ibn Salman. Grant the best of rewards to them and their government for all that they have done - and continue to do - in the service of Islaam, Muslims, and humanity at large. We implore You to be with them as their source of strength and support.
And may Allaah grant commendation and protection to our Prophet Muhammad as well as to the Prophet's family and Companions."
After that, the pilgrims performed combined and shortened Dhuhr (noon) and Asr (afternoon) prayers at Namirah Mosque, in Arafat.

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