The First Friday Of Ramadan
Sheikh 'Abdullah ibn Salih Al Qussayyar
The first sermon:
Praise be to Allah. We praise Him and seek His help. We ask for Allah's
forgiveness, His Guidance, and we repent to Him. We seek refuge with Allah
from the evils of ourselves and the evils of our actions, whom Allah guides no
one can mislead and whoever has been misled no one can guide.
I bear witness that there is no god but Allah alone who has no partner and I
bear witness that Muhammad is His Servant and Messenger (peace be upon him),
may Allah send peace and blessing on his family and Companions.
O people, fear your Lord and thank Him as He expanded your lifetime until you
realized this honorable month and great season in which activity is renewed in
obedience, and competition takes place among the believers in pursuit of the
most precious objective through the honorable goods. So, they offer righteous
actions to find them on the Day of Resurrection. How many bounties Allah
bestows on His Servants in this month and how many hearts, which are heedless,
The month of Ramadan is the month of fasting and Qiyam. Allah guaranteed for
those who fast and stay up for worship to forgive their past sins. It is the
month of charities, generosity and sympathy, and Allah loves the doers of
goodness. It is a month which begins with mercy, its middle is full of
forgiveness, and its end contains release of Hell; How great these prizes are!
So, glad tidings are for the people of faith and charity.
Of the favor of Allah on His Servants in this honorable month that the reward
of actions are doubled, so whoever draws nearer to Allah in that month by good
actions is as if he has performed an obligatory duty elsewhere, and whoever
performs an obligation therein is as if he has performed seventy obligations
elsewhere. As actions are doubled in this month, the reward of actions is also
doubled out of Allah's bounty, for He us the Most Merciful. So, whoever offers
food for a fasting person his sins shall be forgiven and he shall be released
from Hell-Fire. It was reported in Sahih Al Bukhari and Sahih Muslim that the
Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Going to 'Umrah in Ramadan equals
performing Hajj." In another narration, "performing Hajj with me," and Allah
provides sustenance to whomever He wills without expense.
This month contains also Laylatul-Qadr (the Night of Power) which is better
than a thousand months, and whoever stays up for worship out of faith, seeking
the reward from Allah his past sins shall be forgiven. So, how easy is the
action and how much is the reward from Allah, the Generous, the Giver.
Of the great favors of Allah in this month is that Allah (Glory be to Him)
revealed His Plain Book as a mercy for the world, a light for pathfinders, a
sermon for those who take heed, and a guidance for the pious to guide people
to what is right. This book reminds people of Allah, the great and generous
Lord, a plea against liars, a warner to disobedient people, guides and exhorts
to goodness, and warns against evil. Allah makes it a healing to chests and
criterion to the people of faith when things become gloomy. "Alif-Lam-Ra.
[These letters are one of the miracles of the Quran and none but Allah (Alone)
knows their meanings]. (This is) a Book, the Verses whereof are perfected (in
every sphere of knowledge, etc.), and then explained in detail from One
(Allah), Who is All-Wise and Well-Acquainted (with all things)." [Surat Hud:
"Falsehood cannot come to it from before it or behind it (it is) sent down by
the All-Wise, Worthy of all praise (Allah)." [Surat Fussilat: 42].
Whoever holds firm with it will servive, whoever asks for guidance therein
shall be guided, and whoever turns away from it shall fall into destruction.
So, recite it and hold firm with it, for it helps those who hold firm with it
on the Day of Resurrection. It will argue for him, intercede for him until he
enters Paradise, and push those who turn away from it into Hell. "So, hold you
(O Muhammad peace be upon him) fast to that which is inspired in you. Verily,
you are on a Straight Path * And verily, this (the Qur'ân) is indeed a
Reminder for you (O Muhammad peace be upon him) and your people (Quraish
people, or your followers), and you will be questioned (about it)." [Surat
Az-Zukhruf: 43 - 44].
Of the virtues of this generous month and great favors of Allah in this great
season is that it was a time for victory to the people of faith over the
people of Satan. In this month, the battle of Badr took place in which Allah
provided victory to His Servants over their enemies despite the few number
Muslims had. So, the battle of Badr was the first epic in the history of Islam
when disbelief lowered its head. Allah reminded His Servants of this incident
in His Saying: "And Allâh has already made you victorious at Badr, when you
were a weak little force. So fear Allâh much that you may be grateful." [Surat
Al 'Imran: 123].
In this blessed month, Allah opened Makkah, the city of security, at the hand
of His Prophet and the master of His Prophets and Messengers, and Allah
purified it from idols and polytheists, and Allah made it an abode for Islam
forever. That was the conquest at which the angels of the heaven rejoiced as
many people entered into the religion of Allah in groups and the phase of the
world shined. The Muslim nation needs to renew these memories to restore
holding firm with Islam to get up from stumbles and receive leadership of all
nations in all continents.
Blessings which Allah deposited in this month for His Servants are plenty, so
praise Allah for His good judgment and thank Him for what He guided you to,
and compete in all gates of goodness, and beware to waste chances. If you
really had known what Allah saved for you in that month, you would have wished
that the entire year is Ramadan. "Say: "In the Bounty of Allâh, and in His
Mercy (i.e. Islâm and the Qur'ân); - therein let them rejoice." That is better
than what (the wealth) they amass." [Surat Yunus: 58].
So, be of the grateful and beware of the actions of denying disbelievers. "And
(remember) when your Lord proclaimed: If you give thanks (by accepting Faith
and worshipping none but Allah), I will give you more (of My Blessings), but
if you are thankless (i.e. disbelievers), verily! My Punishment is indeed
severe." [Surat Ibrahim: 7].
So, fear Allah, worship Him, pray your five daily Salah to please Him, pay
Zakah of your money to show gratitude, and fast your month seeking the reward
from Allah. Compete in righteous actions which He legislated for you
sincerely, repent to Allah of your past sins, open the gates of mercy to
yourself, and pursuit the reasons of forgiveness by removing enmity and hatred
from your hearts, abandoning conflict and disputes, pardoning people and
reconciling between Muslims.
Let it be known that fasting is only ordained for a person to have piety and
prevent his organs to transgress Allah's Limits. So, a person should leave out
any sinful word and forbidden action such as: Backbiting, tale bearing, lying,
slander, cheating and deception, oppression, decreasing weights and
measurements, usury, bribery, and all kinds of bad actions that prevent the
acceptance of charity and answering invocations.
A fasting person should keep away from forbidden looks and listening to songs,
for listening to music decreases the reward of a fasting person and bring
about different types of sins; if there is a defect except depriving the doer
from the pleasure of reciting the Qur'an, it will be enough.
During that month, do frequently four qualities: Two of them to please your
lord which are: To bear witness that there is no god but Allah, and seeking
forgiveness. The other two which you cannot do without are: Asking Allah for
Paradise and seeking refuge against Hell-Fire.
Be keen to invoke Allah at breaking the fast, for a fasting person has an
answered invocation at the time of breaking the fast.
I seek refuge with Allah from the accursed Satan: "And when My Slaves ask you
(O Muhammad peace be upon him) concerning Me, then (answer them), I am indeed
near (to them by My Knowledge). I respond to the invocations of the supplicant
when he calls on Me (without any mediator or intercessor). So let them obey Me
and believe in Me, so that they may be led aright." [Surat Al Baqarah: 186].
May Allah bless the Glorious Qur'an for you and me, and may Allah make us
benefit from Ayahs and Wise mention.
These are my words to you, and I seek Allah's Forgiveness for you and me of
every sin, so seek His Forgiveness, for He is All-Forgiving, All-Merciful.
Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the world [i.e., people]. The Most Gracious
the Most Merciful. The Master of the Day of Judgment. And I bear witness that
there is no god but Allah alone who has no partner. He loves benefactors and
rewards the givers. I bear witness that Muhammad is His Servant and Messenger,
the trustworthy and truthful, and the adviser (peace be upon him).
O fasting people, fear Allah and know that fasting has etiquettes and manners,
so hold firm to them so that you will come on the Day of Resurrection having
more reward than others. Of these manners is the Pre-Dawn Meal where the
Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Observe the Pre-Dawn Meal, for it contains
a blessing." Food is not called Suhur (Pre-Dawn Meal) except it is eaten with
the intention of fasting before dawn. It was reported in the Hadith that the
Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "My nation is still in goodness as long as
they delay the Pre-Dawn Meal." It was reported that the Prophet (peace be upon
him) said: "The separation between our fasting and the fast of the People of
the Scriptures is the Pre-Dawn Meal." It was reported that the Prophet (peace
be upon him) said: "Indeed, Allah and His Angels send peace and blessings on
those who have the Pre-Dawn Meal."
Of the manners of fasting:
A fasting person should beware of idle talks by avoiding cursing and insult,
and when someone curses or insults him, he should say: "I am fasting, I am
fasting," and should not slander him back. If this is the manner which you
should adopt with those who insult you, so do not start with it.
Of the manners of fasting, a fasting person should hasten the breaking of the
fast when he ascertains sunset, for the most beloved servants to Allah are
those who hasten the break of the fast as it is contradictory to extremism and
the customs of the People of Scriptures and whims, so people are still in
goodness as long as they hasten the break of the fast.
Of the etiquettes of breaking the fast is that a fasting person should break
his fast by eating fresh dates, but if he cannot find any, he should drink
sips of water, so do not start with something else as much as you can.
Manners and etiquettes are plenty for those who like to follow as mentioned by
Muftis, preachers, guides, and reciters in masjids.
"And of them there are some who say: Our Lord! Give us in this world that
which is good and in the Hereafter that which is good, and save us from the
torment of the Fire!" [Surat Al Baqarah: 201].
O servants of Allah, "Verily, Allâh enjoins Al-'Adl (i.e. justice and
worshipping none but Allâh Alone ? Islâmic Monotheism) and Al-Ihsân [i.e. to
be patient in performing your duties to Allâh, totally for Allâh's sake and in
accordance with the Sunnah (legal ways) of the Prophet peace be upon him in a
perfect manner], and giving (help) to kith and kin (i.e. all that Allâh has
ordered you to give them e.g., wealth, visiting, looking after them, or any
other kind of help), and forbids Al-Fahshâ' (i.e. all evil deeds, e.g. illegal
sexual acts, disobedience of parents, polytheism, to tell lies, to give false
witness, to kill a life without right), and Al-Munkar (i.e. all that is
prohibited by Islâmic law: polytheism of every kind, disbelief and every kind
of evil deeds), and Al-Baghy (i.e. all kinds of oppression). He admonishes
you, that you may take heed." [Surat An-Nahl: 90].
So, remember Allah, the Ever-Magnificent so that He may remember you and thank
Him for His Favors to increase them for you. Indeed, the mention of Allah is
greater, and Allah knows what you are doing.