وَنَعُوذُ بِاللَّهِ مِنْ شُرُورِ أَنْفُسِنَا وَمِنْ سَيِّئَاتِ أَعْمَالِنَا
مَنْ يَهْدِهِ ٱللَّهُ فَلا مُضِلَّ لَهُ، وَمَنْ يُضْلِلْ فَلَا هَادِيَ لَهُ
وَنَشْهَدُ أَنْ لَآ إِلَٰهَ إِلَّا ٱللَّهُ وَحْدَهُ لَا شَرِيكَ لَهُ
وَنَشْهَدُ أَنَّ مُحَمَّدًا عَبْدُهُ وَرَسُولُهُ
قَالَ ٱللَّهُ تَعَالَى؛ (أَعُوذُ بِاللَّهِ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ الرَّجِيمِ)
يَٰٓأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ حَقَّ تُقَاتِهِۦ
وَلَا تَمُوتُنَّ إِلَّا وَأَنْتُمْ مُسْلِمُونَ
يَٰٓأَيُّهَا النَّاسُاتَّقُوا رَبَّكُمُ الَّذِي خَلَقَكُمْ مِنْ نَفْسٍ وَاحِدَةٍ
وَخَلَقَ مِنْهَا زَوْجَهَا وَبَثَّ مِنْهُمَا رِجَالاً كَثِيراً وَنِسَآءً ۚ
وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ الَّذِي تَسَآءَلُونَ بِهِۦوَالْأَرْحَامَ ۚ
إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ عَلَيْكُمْ رَقِيباً
يَٰٓأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَقُولُوا قَوْلاً سَدِيداً
يُصْلِحْ لَكُمْ أَعْمَالَكُمْ وَيَغْفِرْ لَكُمْ ذُنُوبَكُمْ ۗ
وَمَنْ يُطِعِ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُۥ فَقَدْ فَازَ فَوْزاً عَظِيماً
(70-71 :33 Quran)
وَأَحْسَنُ الْهَدْيِ هَدْيُ مُحَمَّدٍ ﷺ
وَشَرُّالأُمُورِ مُحْدَثَاتُهَا وَكُلُّ مُحْدَثَةٍ بِدْعَةٌ
وَكُلُّ بِدْعَةٍ ضَلالَةٌ وَكُلُّ ضَلالَةٍ فِي النَّارِ
Indeed all praise is due to Allah; we seek His help, and we seek His forgiveness, and we seek refuge in Allah from the evil of our souls and the evil of our actions. Whomsoever Allah guides, none can misguide, and whomsoever Allah misguides, none can guide. We bear witness there is no diety worthy of worship except for Allah, the One Who has no partner, and we bear witness that Muhammad ﷺ is His servant and messenger.
May peace and blessings be upon our beloved Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, his noble family, his companions and all those who follow their guidance till the Day of Reckoning.
My dear respected brothers & sisters;
We would like to mention one of the earliest, and indeed most remarkable interactions between Islam and Christianity.
This was when Islam was still at its infancy in Makkah. The early converts to Islam suffered greatly in the hands of the ruling Quraish.
Jafar ibn Abi Taleb RA, the elder brother of Ali ibn Abi Taleb RA, led a delegation of emigrants to Habesha (Abyssinia) which was under the rule of a just Christian king, named Najashi.
The Quraish warlords sent their own delegation to King Najashi asking him to expel the Muslims accusing them of being traitors of their own people.
The king said: “No, by God, I won’t surrender them to anyone until I myself call them and question them about what they have been accused of.”
King Najashi invited the Muslims to his court and asked their leader Jafar RA: “What is this religion which you have introduced for yourself and which has served to cut you off from the religion of your people? You also did not enter my religion nor the religion of any other community.”
The Muslim leader Jafar RA had to respond well, his answer was critical in ensuring safety for his people. Thus prompted one of the most eloquent speeches in Islamic history, highlighting the very essence and best of Islam.
Jafar RA stood and replied, “O king, we were a people in a state of ignorance and immorality, worshipping idols and eating the flesh of dead animals, committing all sorts of abomination and shameful deeds, breaking the ties of kinship, treating guests badly and the strong among us exploited the weak.
“We remained in this state until Allah sent us a Prophet ﷺ (peace be upon him), one of our own people whose lineage, truthfulness, trustworthiness and integrity were well-known to us. He ﷺ called us to worship Allah alone and to renounce the stones and the idols, which we and our ancestors used to worship besides Allah.
“He ﷺ commanded us to speak the truth, to honor our promises, to be kind to our relations, to be helpful to our neighbours, to cease all forbidden acts, to abstain from bloodshed, to avoid obscenities and false witness, not to appropriate an orphan’s property nor slander chaste women.
He ﷺ ordered us to worship Allah alone and not to associate anything with Him, to uphold Salah, to give Zakat and fast in the month of Ramadan. We believed in him ﷺ and what he ﷺ brought to us from Allah, and we follow him ﷺ in what he ﷺ has asked us to do and we keep away from what he ﷺ forbade us from doing.
“Thereupon, O king, our people attacked us, visited the severest punishment on us to make us renounce our religion and take us back to the old immorality and the worship of idols.
“They oppressed us, made life intolerable for us and obstructed us from observing our religion. So we left for your country, choosing you before anyone else, desiring your protection and hoping to live in justice and in peace in your midst.”
King Najashi was impressed and was eager to hear more. He asked Jafar RA : “Do you have with you something of what your Prophet brought from God? Please read to me:” Jafar RA recited for him a portion of Surah Maryam from Verses 19 to 32.
King Najashi stood up for Allah’s words and said: Certainly this and what Jesus (AS عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) had brought come out of one source. He turned to the Makkan delegates and said, "I won’t hand them to you and I’ll defend them. " Then he ordered his courtier to dismiss the delegation and to return their gifts to them. He then turned to Jafar RA and his group and said: “You are welcome; your Prophet is welcome. I admit that he is the Apostle about whom Jesus (AS) had given good news. Live wherever you like in my country.”
As time passed and Islam began grow, Prophet Muhammad ﷺ sent a letter to King Najashi, who received the letter with great honor, touched it with his eyes and read it. He came down from his throne and sat on the ground to show his respect for the Prophet of Allah ﷺ. Later he asked the letter to be preserved in an ivory casket.
The king wrote back saying, "...I testify that you are the Messenger of Allah, true and confirming those before you. I have given my allegiance to you and to your brother (i.e. Jafar) and I have surrendered myself through him to the Lord of the Worlds.”
When King Najashi died the Prophet ﷺ offered his funeral prayer in absentia, and he was buried in Ethiopia. May Allah SWT forgive and reward him with Jannatul Firdaws.
Thus was the account of one of the most important relationships in Islamic history, when the early Muslims had no one else to turn to, and was saved a noble Christian king. Compare this to the situation of Muslims today, when many of our brothers and sisters are escaping prosecution in their own lands, seeking help and refuge from traditionally Christian countries.
May Allah give us tawfiq to benefit from what has been shared today.
أَقُولُ قَوْ لِي هَذَا، وأَسْتِغْفِرُاللَّهَ الْعَظِيمَ لِي وَلَكُمْ
وَلِسَائِرِالْمُسْلِمِينِ ، فَاسْتَغْفِرُوهُ ، إِنَّهُ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ
بِسْمِ اللَّهِ ، وَالْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ ، وَالصَّلَاةُ وَالسَّلَامُ عَلَى رَسُولِ اللَّهِ ﷺ
أَنَّ النَّبِيَّ ﷺ قَالَ؛ بَلِّغُوا عَنِّي وَلَوْ آيَةً
Dear respected brothers and sisters;
The Quran makes it clear that the Christians will be nearest in love to those who follow the Quran.
Allah SWT says:
...and you will find the nearest of them in affection to the believers those who say,
"We are Christians"...
(Quran 5: 82)
May Allah SWT give us tawfiq to cherish and preserve our relationship with our Christian friends and neighbours, as well as all people. Ameen.
اَللَّهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِلْمُسْلِمِيْنَ وَالْمُسْلِمَاتِ
وَالْمُؤْمِنِيْنَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتِ اْلأَحْيَاءِ مِنْهُمْ وَاْلأَمْوَاتِ
إِنَّكَ سَمِيْعٌ قَرِيْبٌ مُجِيْبُ الدَّعَوَاتِ
رَبَّنَا ظَلَمْنَا أَنفُسَنَا وَإِن لَّمْ تَغْفِرْ لَنَا
وَتَرْحَمْنَا لَنَكُونَنَّ مِنَالْخَاسِرِينَ
رَبَّنَا لاَ تُزِغْ قُلُوبَنَا بَعْدَ إِذْ هَدَيْتَنَا وَهَبْ لَنَا مِن لَّدُنكَ رَحْمَةً
إِنَّكَ أَنتَ الْوَهَّابُ
رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الْآخِرَةِ حَسَنَةً
وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ
إنَّ اللَّهَ يَأْمُرُ بِالْعَدْلِ وَالْإِحْسَانِ وَإِيتَاءِ ذِي الْقُرْبَىٰ
وَيَنْهَىٰ عَنِ الْفَحْشَاءِ وَالْمُنْكَرِ وَالْبَغْيِ ۚ
يَعِظُكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَذَكَّرُونَ
Indeed, Allah orders justice and good conduct and giving to relatives and forbids immorality and bad conduct and oppression. He admonishes you that perhaps you will be reminded.
فَاذْكُرُوا اللَّهَ الْعَظِيمَ يَذْكُرْكُمْ، وَاشْكُرُوهُ عَلَى نِعَمِهِ يَزِدْكُمْ
وَلَذِكْرُ اللَّهِ أَكْبَرُ، وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ مَا تَصْنَعُونَ