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Friday Sermon: Divine attribute of Al Lateef - The Benignant

Sermon Delivered by Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad at Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.
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NOTE: Alislam Team takes full responsibility for any errors or miscommunication in this Synopsis of the Friday Sermon

Huzur delivered his Friday Sermon on the subject of the Divine attribute of Al Lateef (the Incomprehensible, the Knower of all subtleties, the Benignant).   

Huzur said according to the lexicon Lateef is a kind and gracious being, it is one of the Divine attributes and as such it connotes One Who is Benevolent to His creation as well as One Who is Aware of all subtle and incomprehensible matters. According to various commentators Al Lateef is One Who illumines hearts, Who makes arrangements for physical and spiritual nourishment and Who offers His friendship to His servants at times of tribulation.  Also, One Who is most Benignant in matters of accountability, Who acknowledges good but covers weakness, Who accepts small sacrifices and recompenses them with great reward, makes good the matters for one whose affairs are troubled and  One Who understands the subtleties of matters.

 In verse 104 of Surah Al An’am Allah the Exalted states: ‘Eyes cannot reach Him but He reaches the eyes. And He is the Incomprehensible, the All-Aware.’ (6:104). Elucidating this verse the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said that sight, intellect and consciousness cannot reach God – it is impossible to try and see Him. He is Al Lateef, He is Unseen, indeed Whoever He reaches He illumines that person to such an extent that the person speaks for Him and this blessing is mostly granted to the Prophets of God and was given above all to the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). However, those around him who lacked insight were deprived of benefitting from his beneficence. Huzur said one does not require worldly astuteness, education or status to witness the light of God. Rather, God Who is the Knower of all subtleties and is All-Aware as to who are those who truly look for His light and have a real longing to seek Him. He makes arrangements that people who thus seek Him see the light of the Prophets. Huzur said if one’s longing is sincere then by virtue of His attributes God Himself provides guidance for His servant. His light is manifested through His Prophets as they spread the light of Unity of God all around them. Among all the Prophets of God the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) disseminated this light the most for it was him who had the most perfect perception of God and it was he who was completely imbued in the colours of God. In the current age, because of his perfect and complete devotion and subservience to the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) God granted this light to the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace).

Huzur said today the Word of God fulfils those who purify their hearts and wish to seek God in the true sense and accept the Imam of the age. Such people are then enabled to witness to God’s manifestations every day. Huzur said indeed in this age it is the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) alone, who, by virtue of his subservience to the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him), can lead one to the Unity of God. Expounding the aforementioned verse he said that the Being of God is Incomprehensible and no one can discover Him through intellect. One may realise the reality of the Unity of God only after one has abandoned all false deities; external and internal. Such are the obstacles that impede one in reaching God. However, God is Al Lateef and also All-Aware and His light enters pure hearts. He knows what is in the inner recesses of hearts, therefore God’s light will not reach a heart that is filled with false deities.

Huzur cited verse  101 of Surah Yusuf: ‘And he raised his parents upon the throne, and they all fell down prostrate before God for him. And he said, ‘O my father, this is the fulfilment of my dream of old. My Lord has made it true. And He bestowed a favour upon me when He took me out of the prison and brought you from the desert after Satan had stirred up discord between me and my brethren. Surely, my Lord is Benignant to whomsoever He pleases; for He is the All-Knowing, the Wise.’ (12:101) and explained that here Hadhrat Yusuf (peace be on him) is mentioning God’s favours by virtue of His attribute of Al Lateef (the Benignant) and is recalling how God was his Friend while his brothers conspired against him and is acknowledging that at the time he has worldly status, again by virtue of God’s attribute of Al Lateef in that He has rewarded him as well as his father immensely for their sacrifice. Huzur said God is the Friend of His true servants in all trials and tribulations, He enabled Hadhrat Yusuf (peace be on him) and his father to remain steadfast and as they were both dear to God and were granted His nearness, the other brothers were also able to reform themselves. Here, Huzur said the subject-matter that un-folds is that through prayer the opportunity to reform others arises and the closer the person who prays for another’s reformation the more it is accepted. The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) ever prayed for his ummah, even when people of some towns persecuted him, he prayed for them, hoping for their reformation. Huzur said we too need to pray for the Muslim ummah today so that God may purify their hearts and enable them to accept the truth.

Huzur cited verse 64 of Surah Al Hajj: ‘Hast thou not seen that Allah sends down water from the sky and the earth becomes green? Allah is indeed the Knower of subtleties, the All-Aware.’ (22:64) and explained that here God states that by virtue of His attribute of Al Lateef it must be remembered that life originates with water and in order to attain spiritual life one needs to focus on the Unity of God Who possesses all powers. The metaphor of water from the sky connotes that just as rainfall makes the earth and the soil verdant similarly when the spiritual water comes down it facilitates the spiritual development of people. Huzur said physical rainfall falls on all land but this does not result in rocks and deserts to bloom. Similarly the spiritual water only benefits those who are pure and those who have a glimmer of goodness in them. Huzur said this sheds light on the fact that water is a sign of life and when it falls on the earth, the soil flourishes and as a result the living creatures also benefit. However, rainfall does not result in rocky surfaces and deserts to bloom, although the living creatures that inhabit the area benefit from the rainfall. Spiritual water enables pure hearts to develop and while pure hearts bear fruits due to such water those opposing them also have worldly benefits from spiritual water. The material benefit to stone-hearted people is akin to the current situation wherever our Community is progressing the opponents are trying to reap political and financial benefit. They have had material advantage from the advent of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace).

Huzur said God sends spiritual water when there are signs of a near-death state in people. At a time of intense spiritual darkness He sent the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) with the perfect religion and Shariah through which the earth flourished. Later in accordance with his prophecy and after a thousand years of darkness that followed, God sent his true and ardent devotee so that he may revive the faith and may take the light to those hearts who had a true and sincere longing to seek the light. Indeed the Knower of all subtleties God knows who is it that seeks Him.

Huzur said Allah states in verse 20 of Surah Al Shura: ‘Allah is exquisitely kind to His servants. He provides for whom He pleases. And He is the Powerful, the Mighty.’ (42:20) and said that in the aforementioned Surah Al An’am verse God stated that it is He Who reaches the eyes [of people] and had stated in the aforementioned Surah Al Hajj verse that He sends spiritual water and here He states that He is exquisitely kind to His servants and provides all manner of provisions and only those truly benefit from this who, in conjunction with seeking material provisions also seek spiritual provisions. Covering the faults and failings of His servants, forgiving their errors He enables those who seek the spiritual water to recognise His light. By citing His attribute of being Powerful in the verse above, attention is drawn that He also metes justice and that the ultimate triumph is His and those whom He sends and worldly opposition can never extinguish this light. Huzur said this is one of God’s many decrees and it is inevitable. The stability of the world is in trying to seek beneficence from the Divine attribute of Al Lateef and not be deprived of this blessing.

Huzur said currently the general situation in Pakistan is very bad, so prayers should be made for that. In the eyes of the world, Huzur said, it is, as if most of the terrorism is from Pakistan. The news coverage informs us that there is indeed great disorder in the country. For Pakistani Ahmadis the situation is twice as bad and they are suffering due to this. Whenever, wherever they have an opportunity they are harming Ahmadis. Everyone is aware of the case of the four youngsters who were arrested on false charges. No effort to secure a bail for them has come to fruition yet. Many others are also imprisoned. In addition many treacherous conspiracies are hatched against us – at times with the involvement of the government. At an event at the Badshahi Mosque [Lahore] recently a federal minister was present when extremely unseemly words were used for the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace). The government seems to have joined the mullah against the Ahmadis and has thus created a very perilous situation.  Therefore, Huzur said, a lot of prayers should be offered for the protection of the life and property of each Pakistani Ahmadi from all evil. Pakistani Ahmadis have always prayed, they should continue to do so and Ahmadis all over the world should also pray for them. Similarly there are surges of persecution in India and in Indonesia. Currently elections are being held in these countries. Prayers should be made for fair and just governments to come to power. Huzur said Ahmadis in Kazakhstan are also being harassed by governmental organisations; prayers are needed for them as well.

Huzur prayed that may God bestow each Ahmadi all over the world with His grace and may they all receive the beneficence of the attribute of Al Lateef. Ahmadis should pray, may Allah keep everyone protected.

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Verses Cited in this Friday Sermon:
Synopsis:
  • Attribute of Allah: Lateef, Reference to Surat Inaam v. 104 Allah is such light which can't be seen from the naked eye, Blessings of Allah on Hazrat Yousuf, Reference to Surat Hajj v. 64 One can get life through spiritual water, If we did not pay attention to Allah even after he is Lateef then his wrath can be very devestating.
  • اللہ تعالیٰ کی صفت 'لطیف' کا تذکرہ ، سورۃ انعام آیت ۱۰۴کا حوالہ اللہ وہ نور ہے جو ظاہری آنکھ سے نہیں دیکھا جا سکتا، اللہ تعالیٰ کے حضرت یوسف ؑ پہ احسانات، سورۃ حج آیت۶۴ کا حوالہ زندگی روحانی پانی سے ملتی ہے، اگر ہم نے اﷲتعالی کی صفت لطیف کے باوجود اس کے طرف توجہ نہ دی تو اس کی پکڑ بہت سخت ہوگی۔
About Friday Sermon

The Jumu'ah (Friday) prayer is one form of congregational worship in Islam. It takes place every Friday. Regular attendance at the Jumu'ah prayer is enjoined on the believer. According to a Saying of Muhammadsa this congregational prayer is twenty-five times more blessed than worship performed alone. (Bukhari)

Friday Sermons in the Quran

“O ye who believe! When the call is made for Prayer on Friday, hasten to the remembrance of Allah, and leave off all business. That is best for you, if you only knew.” more

Friday Sermons in the Hadith

“… (He who) offers the Prayers and listens quitely when the Imam stands up for sermon, will have his sins forgiven between that Friday and the next”(Bukhari)