‘O ye who believe! fear Allah as He should be feared; and let not death overtake you except when you are in a state of submission.’ (3:103)
This Quranic verse explains the condition of a true believer; a true believer who fulfils all the requisites of Taqwa (righteousness). The summary of these requisites as described by the Holy Qur’an is to be mindful of all the rights of God and all the rights of mankind. To try and practice all kinds of virtues, to try and fulfil all the commandments of God, to accept all God’s and His Prophet’s (may peace and blessings of Allah be on him) prophecies and try and practice them. It is not sufficient to count oneself as one who believes by simply calling oneself a Muslim. It is a continuous process to follow God’s commandments and the blessed model of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). One who abides by all this can only be called a true believer.
People of early religions became disobedient as they did not abide by the commandments given to them and if we too do not abide by Taqwa and are not mindful of God’s commandments and our obligations, we will also come under chastisement and will let death overtake us in a state which is not that of one who follows good deeds.
A true believer should also have fear of God and be on the lookout for what would make him obedient to God. For this even if a true believer has to incur worldly loss, he should not care. Parents, friends, family, religious scholars or other leaders, none should distant one from following God’s commandments. Each one of us will be accountable before God on our own. No family or friends, real or so-called spiritual leaders can take on the burden of another. The essence of true Islam is to reflect over the signs of God, to accept the teachings of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him), to protect oneself from perpetrating oppression and to practice Islam by understanding its true spirit.
God has stated that the Prayer and sacrifice of those who are devoid of Taqwa is not accepted by God, in fact it becomes a source of their destruction. Whereas God becomes the Enemy of the enemies and Friend of the friends of those who put God’s commandments in practice and do everything to please God. Whatever they do to please God is blessed by God. Fortunate are those Muslims who ever endeavour that whenever death may overtake them they are in a state of being a true Muslim.
Having being enabled to accept the true and ardent devotee of the Holy Prophet (may peace and blessings of Allah be on him), Ahmadis too should try and conform to what pleases God and then to maintain the state. This is a huge responsibility of ours and we should always work on it. However, Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih said that as it is obvious from his phraseology, his intended addressee is also the wider Muslim community and that is why he mentioned influence of religious leaders/scholars earlier on. A section of wider Muslim community watches MTA and is therefore receiving the message of Jama’at Ahmadiyya. Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih receives letters from people outside the Jama’at who watch MTA or who have studied about our Jama’at. One such recent letter mentioned that after listening to the discourses of Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih and observing the condition of the world, the person was sure that Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was truthful. He sent his best wishes to us but said that he did not have the strength to contend with society and the Maulwis. For this he may be assumed a coward but he could not join the Jama’at. It was also mentioned by someone among the non-Ahmadis that God’s chastisement should be feared if this Jama’at happens to be a true Jama’at. Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih said such people should remember that God commands to follow Taqwa. Ahmadiyya Jama’at is certainly truthful, the practical testimony of its last 124 years is sufficient in this regard. The fact that in spite of organised government sanctioned persecution, the co-called Fatwas of Maulawis which lead people to perpetrate cruelty, abduct and murder and burn houses of Ahmadis, dismiss them from employment, obstruct children from seeking education, Ahmadis are not only firm on their faith but are ever ready for greater sacrifice should be sufficient proof of the truthfulness of Ahmadiyyat. Besides, the Jama’at is ever progressing which is because God is: ‘an excellent Protector and what an excellent Helper.’
The organisations formed in the name of Islam which carry out Jihadi activities do nothing but bring Islam in disrepute. God states that he grants triumph to those who carry out Jihad in His cause. However, what success have these extremists achieved? Muslims are killing Muslims. For this purpose they are acquiring arms from others. In Syria different factions are fighting each other and demands are made to the Western world to provide them with arms in order to overthrow the government. The Muslim rebels and the Muslim government are using these arms against each other. Both are devoid of Taqwa; these indeed are the people who are far-removed from religion.
Emir Timur was a Muslim ruler [1336 – 1405] who rose from humble beginnings to rule extensive territory. He said that whenever he initiated an expedition/battle, he ascertained if Muslim kings discharged the rights of their subjects or not, if they were firm on their faith or not. If he found the situation to be contrary, he vanquished those rulers and established a system in the land which was based on Islam. He said his success was with God’s succour. Many of Emir Timur’s policies were based on justice and this is why he was successful. Although he also committed some cruelty but it appears that he was the best compared to other rulers of the time. Admitting a weakness, he said that his rule was based on justice, wisdom and astuteness and he looked after his subjects as well as people of the lands that he conquered and all this constituted nine-tenth of his success and only one-tenth of his action was by the sword/force.
The rulers today only have their own interest in mind and only care for their own seat of power. The religious leaders are also embroiled in power struggles and some are either running terrorist organisations or are helping them. Children are given militant training in religious seminaries (Madrassa) and all this is employed against Muslims. Muslim is baying for Muslim’s blood. Islam is a religion of love and peace, the very meaning of which signifies peace and security and removal of pain. Today, these people have brought it in so much disrepute that Muslim organisations are the first to be suspected if any act of terrorism takes place in the world. After the recent explosions in USA at the [Boston] marathon anti-Islamic elements immediately said it was the work of Muslims. They did not name any organisation but cited Muslims as culpable on a collective basis. Thank God these organisations denied having any connection with the atrocity and this statement would have been sufficient. However, as they are devoid of Taqwa, they went on to say that although they had no connection with it, they commended and supported it. What was gained by attacking the defenceless? On the one hand it is their claim that none loves the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) as they do and on the other hand acts contrary to his blessed model are perpetrated. Certainly, one upholds even the slightest of what one’s beloved espouses and the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) taught not to hurt the innocent, children, women and the elderly even during battle and the Qur’an specifically mentions safeguarding people of other religions. Let alone taking lives of people in the absence of a state of war and causing many others to endure becoming amputees. One newspaper wrote that the all this had only one resolution and that was to kill all Muslims. Others dare to express such views because Muslims are spurring them.
Here in the West such atrocities take place rarely and afterwards one has to listen to reproach but restlessness is widespread in almost seventy per cent of the Muslim countries and there it is a daily occurrence. Be it in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Egypt, Syria, Libya, Algeria, Sudan or Somalia. Muslim is killing Muslim everywhere and it is done in the name of religion. If cruelty has to be perpetrated at least it should not be done in the name of religion and this murder and mayhem should not be given the name of Jihad. In the Muslim countries where extremism is not common, there is severe lack of social justice. The poor are getting poorer and the rich are getting richer. The underprivileged, widows and orphans hanker for two square meals in Saudi Arabia which has great wealth of oil. Seemingly in the name of Islam women are not allowed to work but the government does not look after them either. If any provisions are allocated they are not sufficient to feed the family. Meanwhile, even the walls of the king’s palace are plated with gold but the subjects are starving. All this was exposed in a television documentary.
There is similar restlessness in other Muslim countries with governments not providing social justice and committing cruelty and the public too does not pay its responsibilities and when given a chance is also cruel. All this is detachment from Taqwa. It is said that the teaching of Islam is complete, which it is, but they wrongfully say that no reformer or Messiah or Prophet is now needed. It was indeed prophesised by God and His Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) that the advent of such a person will take place for the reformation of the world. And the state of affairs of the world is crying out that Muslims have forgotten their teachings. Mosques exist but they have been made into political arenas. Indeed, the Qur’an is there, but it is kept as mere decoration and the clerics havewritten its commentaries to suit themselves and are thus leading the public on the wrong path. It is wrong to say there is no need for anyone to come because the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) had said that there will be need. There is certainly need for someone to come from God to reform Muslims and negate the wrong perception of Islam and bring the world under the banner of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him).
When God and the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) called the one who was to come a Prophet, who has to right to make his own interpretation and persecute those who follow him? The state of the world bear witness that in spite of the Holy Qur’an preserved in its original form the religious, spiritual and moral state of Muslims is declining and Taqwa is lacking. Majority of the Muslims are leading their lives outside of God’s commandments. A person is indeed required in such a situation to understand the essence of Islam and spread it among Muslims and we Ahmadis say that the person was sent by God in line with the prophecies of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) in the fourteenth century. With the grace and succour of God, he elucidated the spiritual treasures of the Holy Qur’an in his books and made a clear distinction between truth and falsehood. He proved Islam’s superiority over all other world religions and thus challenged its enemies. He lived a long life with God’s support and succour and then passed away leaving behind him an eternal system of succession [Khilafat]. The earthly and heavenly corroborations he received continue to come to pass in the form of natural disasters. Are the earthquakes, the floods, the humiliation of Muslims in the world not enough to open the eyes of Pakistanis and other Muslims? The recent earthquake was felt in many countries, including Indonesia. There is need to ponder over God’s decree in action, there is need for repentance and for Istaghfar (seeking forgiveness from God). Rather than be intimidated by the so-called clerics, they should be made aware of their deceptions. Could they cite even a single incident from the blessed life of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) that is congruous to what they are teaching today? What Muslims should do is to be mindful of their death and pay the rights of God and the right so people.
The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said in this regard: ‘I wish that the way Muslims idolise the world rather than God Almighty and have all their hopes, aspirations and matters connected to the world is smashed to smithereens. And greatness and omnipotence of God Almighty is inculcated in their hearts and the tree of faith bears fresh fruits. Though a form of tree exits at the moment, it is not a real tree because it is stated regarding a real tree: ‘Dost thou not see how Allah sets forth the similitude of a good word? It is like a good tree, whose root is firm and whose branches reach into heaven. It brings forth its fruit at all times by the command of its Lord…’ (14:25 – 26) Allah has given the analogy of a pure tree here for the perfect faith which has a strong root and branches reaching the heaven and which bears fruit at all times with the commandment of its Lord. ‘…whose root is firm…’ denotes that its principles of faith should be strong and truthful and should be of the level of perfect belief and it should bear fruit all the time. It should never be like a dried up tree. However, say if this is the situation now? Many people simply say what is the need [for faith]? How foolish is that ailing person who says what is the need for a physician? If he thinks he does not require a physician and does not feel the need for one, what else but his fatality can result from it? Currently, Muslims have of course accepted Islam but they are not in the state of true belief. That comes to pass when a spiritual light goes along with faith.
In short, these are the matters for which I have been sent. Therefore, do not be hasty in accusing me of falsehood. On the contrary fear God the Almighty and repent because those who repent are wise. The sign of the plague is very dangerous and God Almighty has revealed to me regarding it: ‘…Surely, Allah changes not the condition of a people until they change that which is in their hearts…’ (13:12) This is the word of God Almighty and cursed be one who slanders God Almighty. God Almighty states that His will shall alter when hearts will alter. Thus, fear God Almighty and be afraid of His wrath. None can be responsible for the other. Most people do not even remain loyal in ordinary court cases, what reliance can you expect in the Hereafter, about which it is stated: ‘On the day when a man flees from his brother’ (80:35) Translated from Malfuzat, Vol. 8, pp. 261 – 262
The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) also said: ‘Look, just as a person who claims to believe in Allah, His Messengersa and Book but does not practice the details of the commandments, for example Salat, fasting, Hajj, Zakat, Taqwa and piety and leaves the commandments which have been given regarding purifying the self, abandoning evil and attainment of good etc. is not worthy of being called Muslim and cannot be truly considered to be adorned with the ornament of belief. Similarly, a person who does not accept the Promised Messiah or does not consider the need to accept him is also unaware of the reality of Islam and the purpose of Prophethood. He cannot be rightfully called a true Muslim, and truly obedient to God and His Messengersa. Just as Allah the Exalted has given commandments in the Holy Qur’an through the Holy Prophetsa, similarly the advent of the final Khalifa in the latter-days is also foretold very strongly. Those who do not accept him and turn against him have been called wicked. The difference in the words of the Holy Qur’an and Hadith (which is not a difference but is more of an explanation of the words of the Qur’an) is only that the Holy Qur’an uses the word Khalifa whereas Hadith has called the very same final Khalifa with the title of Promised Messiah. What sort of a Muslim is one who says that he does not have the need to accept a person regarding whose advent the Holy Qur’an has made a promise and has thus granted a kind of greatness to his advent.’ Translated from Malfuzat, Vol. 10, pp. 261 – 262
The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) wrote: ‘O’ foolish ones, what do I compare you to! You are like those unfortunate people near whose house a generous person had cultivated an orchard with all kinds of fruit trees and had designed a stream of sweet water in it and had grown great big shady trees in the garden which gave sheltered thousands from heat. The generous person invited people who were burning in intense heat and there was no shade. There was also no fruit, no water so that they could have sat in shade, ate fruit and drank water. However, the wretched people rejected the invitation and died with the intensity of heat, thirst and hunger. This is why God states that He would bring another people who would sit in the cool shade of trees, will eat fruit and will drink delightful water. By way of example God has stated in the Holy Qur’an that Dhul-Qarnain found a nation burning in heat… and this nation did not want any help from Dhul-Qarnain, as a result it remained in trouble. Dhul-Qarnain found another body of people who sought help from him against the enemy. A wall was built for them and they were saved from the enemy.
I say most truthfully that according to the prophecy of the Holy Qur’an I am that Dhul-Qarnain who experienced the century of every nation. And people burning in the heat are those Muslims who have not accepted me. Christians are [like] those who sit in mud and darkness who do not even look up to see the sun. And those for whom the wall was built is my community. I say truthfully that they alone are the ones whose faith will be saved from the aggression of the enemies. Each foundation/base that is weak will be consumed by shirk (associating partners with God) or atheism. However, this community will last long and Satan will not overcome them and satanic factions will not control them. Their argument/reasoning will be sharper than sword and more piercing than spear and they will continue to triumph over each religion until the Day of Judgement.
Alas those foolish ones who did not recognise me! How dark and dismal were the eyes that could not see the light of truth. They cannot see me because prejudice has darkened their eyes; hearts are corroded and eyes are blinkered. If they were to set out searching truthfully and cleansed their hearts of rancour, fasted during the day and awakened during night to pray in Salat and cried and pleaded, it is hoped that Noble God will make it evident to them who I am. What is needed is to fear God Who is above any need or want.’ (Translated from Brahin e Ahmadiyya Part V, Ruhani Khaza’in Vol. 21, pp. 313 – 315)
The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) further wrote: ‘O people, do not be contemptuous of God and His signs and seek forgiveness of your sins from Him and show humility before Him out of fear of your sins. Have you forgotten the end of those who made accusation of falsehood before you…if you have [any] fear, come in the refuge of God Almighty from your uncertainties. Rise one by one and shun those who bear enmity and be concerned for were you not given the proofs that were given to the disbelievers before you and were signs not sent to you? Are you not lowly and wretched by showing contempt to God…Thus, by the True Benefactor Who granted me honour and provided my affirmation and granted me offspring and destroyed my enemies…and demonstrated sign of word and deed for those who could see. God Almighty exhibited solar and lunar eclipse during Ramadan to you…O people I have come to you from the Powerful God. Is there anyone among you who fears the High and Great [God]. Or will you pass away in negligence? You took your schemes to the limit and took a long time in planning like hunters. Did you experience anything but failure and did you find what you looked for, apart from wasting faith. Thus, children of Muslims fear God. Do you not see how God has fulfilled my word and has shown immense forgiveness for me? What is the matter with you that you do not turn to God’s signs and hurl arrows of rebuke at me? Have you not seen the falseness of your presumption and has the error of your supposition/suspicion not been evident to you? …do not concoct falsehood after being tried and hold your tongues. If you are righteous, be repentant like that person who is mortified and is afraid of his bad ending. God loves those who repent.’ (Translated from Hujjatullah, Ruhani Khaza’in Vol. 12, pp. 192 – 193)
Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih prayed that may God open the hearts of the Muslim Ummah and may they understand God’s decree so that they are saved from the troubled times that they are experiencing. May they understand the signs of natural disasters and desist from cruelty and persecution. May God also enable us to follow Taqwa and be congruous in our word and deed and continue to alert the world from destruction!
Next Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih announced that he would lead funeral Prayers in absentia of two recently deceased Ahmadis: Chuadhry Mahfooz ur Rahman sahib who passed away on 6 April at the age of ninety three. Our current [UK]sadr Ansarullah Chaudhry Waseem sahib is his eldest son. Qaisera Begum sahiba passed away on 13 April at the age of seventy, she was a daughter-in-law of Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih II (may Allah be pleased with him). She was a very courteous lady and had an extremely strong bond with Khilafat. She helped the needy and those who were not well-off. May God elevate the status of the deceased.