“The religion of your father Abraham; He (Allah) named you Muslims.”
(Al-Hajj 22: 79).
Favours: Temporal and Spiritual
O Muslims! Remember that we are the promised children of Abraham (as). There are great promises of God concerning us. God has made us the best of all (Khairi Uman). He gave us until the end of days the development of temporal favours in the form of royalty and also the development of spiritual favours in the form of prophethood, for we are the seed of Abraham (Ibrahim).
God had kept His promise to Abraham’s posterity from the branch of Israel (Jacob / Yaqub) as long as they did not become evil, and thus the system of royalty and that of prophethood were reserved for him.
Divine Favours change Trajectory
But when they became wicked, God changed the trajectory of His Light and (while still holding firm to His promise to Abraham) gave that favour to the posterity of Ismail where we had the Rahmatul-lil-Aalameen (blessing for the entire universe) to bless all nations and whose coming was promised as a manifestation of God. This awaited perfect messenger was indeed the seal of the prophets, the founder of Islam, our beloved prophet Muhammad (pbuh) who came with a perfect divine book, i.e. the Holy Quran.
Turning a Blessing into Curse
As he (pbuh) is a blessing to all nations, the door of the prophets shall never close. It is important that all Muslims know why the Holy Prophet (pbuh) announced the arrival of a prophet who would be at the same time his follower, the ‘Imamakum Minkum’ (i.e. your chief from among yourselves). But how is it that the Ulema ignore this? Why do they say that prophethood in Islam has been cancelled? Through this kind of (wrong) reasoning they put the Muslims on the same level as the Jews, who have incurred the wrath of Allah, and were made bereft of the privilege of prophethood.
Surah Al Fatiha on Continued Blessings
On the contrary, Muslims are from Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh), the award/reward-winning group (Mun’am Alayhim) and cannot be equated with those who are cursed (Maghzubi Alayhim), who went astray (Zwaaleen). Not being under the influence of divine punishment as the Jews, Muslims must continue to see prophets arise among themselves.
To maintain this blessing God teaches a prayer which is found in Surah Al-Fatiha, the first chapter (The Opening) of the Holy Quran. Read it carefully and you will see that mention is made of the same subject I just mentioned. God mentions two groups who lost the blessing of God, i.e., the Jews and Christians. It teaches Muslims not to become ‘Maghzubi Alayhim’ (cursed ones) and Zwaaleen (those who have gone astray), but to follow the path that will attract divine blessing on them. He (Allah) teaches the Muslims to say: “Guide us to the straight path, the path of those upon whom Thou hast bestowed Thy favours, not the path of those who have earned Thine anger nor of those who have gone astray.” (Al-Fatiha 1: 6-7).
Had God discontinued prophethood, then why had He taught prayers to acquire it? The promise was made to Abraham, and through him, to the Israelites, but when they became wicked, they were replaced by better people, the children of Ishmael who then replaced them (in the obtention of this favour). It was never written that the promise made by God to Abraham was revoked or that the progeny of Abraham had become completely wicked. God could take back His promise only in such circumstances when the children of Abraham would have become wicked or when He Himself would have declared that the promise was no longer valid. But however, it is to be noted that God had not established an end to His promise.
Rather, the promise was that, as long as there would be the posterity of Abraham and as long as they would not become evil, prophethood shall continue. And it is a fact that the posterity of Abraham is large and will continue until the end of days. So the only alternative is that this posterity becomes wicked like it happened for the Jews and Christians. But God taught a prayer in Surah Al-Fatiha where on one hand is found the prophecy that the ‘Mun’am Alayhim’ (those who have received rewards (from Allah)), that is to say, part of Abraham’s posterity, will always remain good, and secondly, it is shown that a part will be convinced that prophethood is completely finished; that is to say, they shall become wicked.
So the Muslims of Jamaat Ul Sahih Al Islam, by their beliefs, are found in the posterity of Abraham. But as for the Ulema of the different sects in Islam, where are they? They must open their eyes and realize their position. The prayer taught in Surah Al-Fatiha is prophetic.
Just like the one which the Holy Prophet (pbuh) also taught us and which is contained in the following Darood (Darood Ibrahim):
“O God! Send Thy favours upon Muhammad and his family as You sent Your favour on Ibrahim and his family; surely Thou art worthy of glory and praise.
O God! Send blessings on Muhammad and his family as You sent blessings on Ibrahim and his family; surely Thou art worthy of glory and praise.” (Bukhari).
What were the favours and blessings that Abraham and his family received? Was it not royalty from the temporal perspective, and prophethood from the spiritual perspective? These are the same favours and blessings that the Community of Muhammad (pbuh) has learned to ask in daroods.
It is strange that on one hand the Maulvis put a ‘stop’ to prophethood and on the other hand they pray to ask for the same thing which they strive to cast away. They verily deceive people. These Maulvis cannot stand that Allah chooses His Messenger or His Khalifatullah and blesses him with the Holy Spirit (Divine Revelation) and not themselves.
But this is not the responsibility of a Chosen Man of God to choose his destiny and it is not in the capacity of people and scholars to undo what God has planned. Allah (swt) gives the kingdom to whom He pleases. He makes whom He wills His prophet, for “God knows best where to carry out His mission.” (Al-Anam 6: 125).
It is a matter of reflection that Muslims are continually making efforts to grasp the kingdom of the earth and when they do not get it, they fall into despair, while the kingdom of this world is only temporary: even if we do not have it, it does not matter, BUT if we do not get the spiritual blessings, then it is our future that shall be in danger because error leads to destruction and consequently to hell. So if a prophet comes to drive away error and put the world back on the right path, it is certainly the true purpose of life, for it is then that man shall succeed in this world and the next.
The promise that prophethood would be ongoing in the family of Abraham, that the whole earth would be blessed by his progeny, and also through the prayers that God has taught for obtaining prophethood, all this has been (divinely) planned so that the righteous/ pious creatures God be spared from the clutches of Satan, and that they inherit the blessings of God in the other world, and that they gain the pleasure of God in both the worlds.
This is so because God has established the immutable law that before the end of the world (divine) punishment will visit the countries of the earth, “And there is no city but that We will destroy it before the Day of Resurrection or punish it with a severe punishment. That is set forth in the Book (of Our immutable decrees).” (Bani Israil 17: 59).
Two things are clear from this verse. First, the habit of humans to stray after finding the right path will persist until the end of time. Satan, according to his oath, shall continue to turn people away from the right path and will succeed to some degree. Second, God will send a terrible punishment to save people from their great error. These two things will continue until doomsday.
Whoever claims that after the advent of the Holy Quran and the Holy Prophet (pbuh) people shall not be misled is wrong. Since God is Forgiving and Generous, He never tyrannizes His creatures. Thus, where He has warned of a terrible punishment that shall visit every city, He also said: “We never punish without first sending a Messenger.” (Bani Israil 17: 16)
It is necessary that a prophet comes before the punishment so that people are not surprised in recklessness. When this punishment come, those who believe in the prophet and took the right path will be saved, while those will be destroyed, who are proud of their wealth and their grouping, are opposed to him and do not repent of their sins and iniquities, despite that they have repeatedly been warned of the dangerous situation in which they find themselves.
May Allah (swt) keep us all on the right path, in the group of the ‘Mun’am Alayhim’ (those who are (handsomely) rewarded (by Allah)). Ameen.
---Friday Sermon of January 22, 2016 delivered by Imam Muhyi-ud-Din Al Khalifatullah Hadhrat Munir Ahmad Azim Saheb (atba) of Mauritius.