In Praise of the Prophet

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,

Today, I’d like to begin my khutba by stressing the point that it is among the prescriptions of Islam to recite Salutations and Blessings upon Allah’s Messenger (saw) as is evident in the following Qur’anic verse : “Verily, Allah and His Angels send (shower) blessings on the Prophet, O you who believe! Send upon him blessings and salute him fully well in abundance” (Surah al-Ahzab: 56).

Allah Almighty in the Holy Qur’an has enjoined the performance of many things upon us such as Salaat, Zakat, Fasting, Hajj. In numerous verses He has also praised His Prophets and described their good qualities. When He created Adam (as) and directed the Angels to perform sajda (prostration) to him, He does not say in any of His directions, “I (Allah) am doing it, therefore you should do likewise.”

This honour was exclusively for our Beloved Prophet Muhammad (saw). Here, in the above verse, Allah Almighty at the very outset attributed salawat (recital of blessings) on our Beloved Prophet Muhammad (saw), first to Himself (Sunnat iIaahi), then to His Angels (Sunnat il-Malaa’ika), and after this enjoined on the Muslims (Sunnat il-Mu’mineen) to do the same, by saying, “Undoubtedly, Allah and His Angels send blessings on the Prophet (the Communicator of Unseen News), O you who believe! Send upon him blessings and salute him fully well in abundance“. There cannot be a greater honour for the Believers than this, who have been favoured with a share in this Divine Action by Allah Almighty and His Angels. 

Sending prayers on the Prophet Muhammad (saw) is important but unfortunately there is a sad tendency in Muslims today, to neglect and de-emphasize the importance of our beloved Prophet (saw).

But it is a well-known fact that devotion to the Messenger of Allah (saw) is one of the essential duties of a believer. Devotion to him should actually exceed the love we have for our property, kin and kith, and progeny. Devotion to the Prophet is evidence of true faith. This devotion entails, among other things, sending blessings on him to show him gratitude and acknowledge his many favors, as befits his standing.

It is stated in the commentary of the Qur’an, “Some scholars are of the opinion that the meaning of Allah’s blessing is, to raise the Prophet Muhammad Mustafa (saw) to al-maqaam al-mahmood (the Glorious Station), the place from where he will intercede with Allah Almighty on behalf of his Community (Ummah).

The invocation (offering) of Blessings on the Holy Prophet in Arabic is “Salawat”, or “salat ala an-nabi”, or as “Salatus-Salam”.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

The literal meaning of Salat is none other than Du’a, or as we know in English, ‘the prayer’. Hence, when one performs Salat to Allah, he is praying to Allah. When one sends Salat upon the Prophet, he is not actually praying to the Prophet, but in fact, sending prayers upon the Prophet, thereby praying to Allah alone.

Some scholars have stated that Salat also means ‘mercy’. According to this opinion, when one prays to Allah, he is asking for Allah’s mercy, and if he prays upon the, he is asking Allah to have mercy on the Prophet.

Rewards For Offering Blessings & Salutations to the Messenger

There are also a number of hadith which mention the rewards to be earned for sending blessings and salutations upon the Prophet:

Sahl ibn Sa`d (ra) narrates: Allah’s Messenger (saw) came out and met Abu Talha. The latter rose and went to him saying: “My father and mother be sacrificed for you, O Messenger of Allah! I see joy and delight in your face?” The Prophet (saw) said: “Yes, for Gabriel has just come to me saying: O Muhammad, whoever among your Community invokes blessings upon you once, Allah records for Him ten good deeds, erases from his account ten evil deeds (sins), and elevate (raises) him by ten ranks because of it.” [Nasa’i.]

Abu al-Darda (ra) relates that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said, “Whoever sends blessings on me ten times in the morning and ten in the evening will have my intercession on Judgment Day” [Tabarani].

In a hadith narrated by Ibn Mas’ud (ra), the Messenger of Allah, (saw) said, “Verily the nearest of people to me on the Day of Judgment will be those who recited much prayers on me” [Tirmidhi].

Those who are most deserving of my intercession on the Day of Judgment are those who used to increasingly seek Allah’s Blessing for me.” [Tirmidhi]

It is reported that the Prophet (saw) said, “The Angels will continue to bless anyone who blesses me, as long as he continues to do so, so do a lot or even a little” [Ibn Hanbal, Ibn Majah, and at-Tabbarani].

In another tradition, it is related, “People will come to me that I only recognize by the abundance of their prayer on me.” And in yet another hadith it is narrated, “The first among you to be saved from the terrors of the Day of Rising and its places will be the one who said the most prayers for me.

Abdullah ibn ‘Amr ibn Al-‘Aas is reported to have said, “ one who sends blessings upon the Prophet once, Allah and His angels will send seventy-fold blessings

Ubayy ibn Ka`b (ra) relates: “I once told the Prophet (saw) ‘O Messenger of Allah, I invoke much. What portion of that should be of prayer upon you?’
The Prophet, upon him be peace, replied, ‘However much you wish.
To this, I said, ‘A fourth?’
He said, ‘If you wish, but should you increase that number, it will be better for you.
I then said, ‘A third?’
And he said, ‘If you wish, and if you increase it, it is still better for you.
‘A half?’ I asked.
He replied, ‘If you wish, and if you do more, it is still better for you.
I then said, ‘Indeed! Then I shall make all of my prayers upon you!’
To this, he responded, ‘If you do that, then you will be freed of anxiety and your wrongs pardoned!’” [Tirmidhi]

Warnings Against Not Sending Salawat

There are also severe warnings for not sending prayers and blessings such as:

Narrated by Ali ibn Abu Talib (ra): The Prophet (saw) said: “A miser is one who does not invoke blessings upon me when I am mentioned in his presence.” [Tirmidhi]

Abu Hurairah (ra) reported that the Prophet said: “If people sit in an assembly in which they do not remember Allah nor invoke a blessing on the Prophet, it will be a cause of grief for them on the Day of Judgment.” [Tirmidhi]

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

In Conclusion it can be stressed : Let us keep our tongues moist with the continuous recitation of Salat and Salam on our beloved Prophet Muhammad (saw) – to keep us away from idle gossip and further to increase our reward and bring change in our lives.

Alhamdu lillahi Rabbil ‘Aalameen. Was-salaatu was-salaamu alaa Khayril mursaleen. Muhammadin-nabeey-yil Ummiy-yee, wa-‘alaa aalihee, wa sahbihee, aj-ma’een.
Ammaa ba’ad:
Innalláha wa malaaikata yusallúna alan nabi. Yá ay yuhal latheena ámanu sallú alayhi wasalli mú tas leema. Allahumma salli alá Muhammad, wa ala áli Muhammad, kama salayta ala Ibrahim, wa ala ali Ibrahim. Allahumma barik ala Muhammad, wa alaa áli Muhammad, kama barakta ala Ibrahim, wa ala ali ibrahim. Fil ála meen, innaka hameedun majeed.”

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