Father’s Day – Fatherhood in Islam

As-salámu ‘alaikum wa rahmatul láhi wa barakátuh!”
“A-úthu billáhi minash shaytánir rajeem.  Bismilláhir rahmánir raheem.
Al hamdu lillahi nahmaduhu wanasta’eenahu, wanastagh-firuhu, wanatoobu ilayhi, wana’oothu Billaahi min shuroori an-fusinaa, wamin sayyi aati a’maalinaa. May- Yahdillahu fa huwal muhtad, wa may- yudlill falan tajidaa lahu waliyan murshida. Wa ash-hadu an Laa ilaaha ill-Alláh, wahdahoo laa shareeka lah, wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan ‘abduhoo warasooluh”
In the Name of Allah, Most Merciful, Most Compassionate.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

It will be Father’s Day this Sunday, a day dedicated to celebrating the existence and blessings of fathers around the world. Whilst Father’s Day is a man-made celebration and not celebrated in Islam, it is a great opportunity to reflect upon the place of a father in Islam. Therefore today’s khutbah will be about fathers.

There are many hadiths which put a great emphasis on the role of the mother yet not as many about the importance of the father. The father is the family’s main bread winner and therefore spends a lot of time at work and does not bond as much with his children as a mother would do naturally. However, the father is the backbone of a family, he is the one who provides for the family’s needs, supports and protects the family from harm and gives the family unit the comfort of stability. Without a solid father to maintain a family’s stability, that family could become weak and vulnerable.

We know Islam thinks highly of those who appreciate and are good to their fathers, as it is said that:

“God’s pleasure is in the pleasure of the father, and God’s displeasure is in the displeasure of the father.”

Although there aren’t many references to the father in particular in the Qur’an, there are at least 15 references to parents. The following verse taken from the Qur’an suggests the importance of gratitude to parents:

“And We have enjoined on man (to be good) to his parents. In travail upon travail did his mother bear him, and in two years was his weaning. Show gratitude to Me and to thy parents; to Me is thy final goal.” (Chapter 31: verse 14)

From this verse we understand that gratitude to Allah (SWT) is incomplete without gratitude to parents. Allah (SWT) is pleased with those who treat their parents well and are thankful to them. Allah (SWT) puts great emphasis on the importance of gratifying parents in the Qur’an and therefore appreciation towards the parents is also appreciation towards Allah (SWT).

“Thy Lord hath decreed that ye worship none but Him, and that ye be kind to parents. Whether one or more attain old age in thy life, say not to them a word of contempt, nor repel them, but address them in terms of honor. And out of kindness, lower to them the wing of humility, and say, “my Lord! bestow on them Thy Mercy, even as they cherished me in childhood.”” (17: 23,24)

Islam attaches great significance to the father as they are commanded by Allah (SWT) to support, protect and provide for the educational, physical, psychological and religious needs of his children. ‘Ali ibn al-Husain (ra) is reported to have said:

“The right of your father on you is that you should know that it is he who brought you into existence, and you are a branch of the tree of his life.”

Therefore, Brothers and Sisters, let’s take great pride in our parents and treat them as Allah (SWT) would like us to treat them. Let’s remember that without their love, support and guidance we wouldn’t be where we are today. Your gratitude towards them is your golden ticket to paradise.

Let us pray to Allah (SWT) that He will guide us to be obedient and kind children to our fathers and that we continue to show humility towards them, regardless of the power and status we may possess. Let us also pray that we will guide our own children through their lives and pass our responsibilities on to them as Islam necessitates, so that Allah (SWT) may be pleased with them and us. And may He bless us all, both in this world and in the Hereafter; Ameen.

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