Friday Sermon: Renaissance of Islam and persecution

October 26th, 2012

Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih recited the following verses at the start of the Friday sermon today:

‘By the heaven having mansions of stars,

And by the Promised Day

By the testifier and the one who is testified

Cursed be the people of the trenches –

The fire fed with fuel –

As they sat by it,

And they witnessed what they did to the believer’s.

And they hated them not but because they believed in Allah, the Almighty, the Praiseworthy,

To Whom belongs the kingdom of the heavens and the earth; and Allah is Witness over all things.

Those who persecute the believing men and the believing women and then repent not, for them is surely the punishment of Hell, and for them is the punishment of burning.

But those who believe and do good works, for them are Gardens through which streams flow. That is the great triumph.’ (Surah Al Buruj, verses 2 – 12)

Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih explained that these verses speak of the teaching of Islam in every era, they speak of the second phase of Islam and the coming of the Promised Messiah, they also speak of enemies of the Promised Messiah and his community. These verses also prepare members of the community to be prepared for opposition and speak of long-lasting opposition. However, God would not remain silent at this opposition. A day will come when those who persecute believers will be punished and those who create fire for Ahmadi Muslims will burn in a greater fire. The Jama’at has been given the glad-tiding of triumph in this world and every believer is given the glad-tiding of Paradise. Thus is the summary of these verses.

Reflecting on these verses while being mindful of the current state of affairs regarding our Jama’at, one’s belief in the truthfulness of the Holy Qur’an and the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) is increased. One’s belief in God is also enhanced as to how centuries ago He foretold what was to come through this illustration. It assures that Islam would prosper through the ages albeit in specific areas and then gives the glad-tiding of a Promised One to come who would take the message of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) not to specific areas and specific people, as the Mujaddid (reformers) of past did, but would take it to the entire world and for this a community would be established in every country of the world, thus giving us the insight into the message of:

‘Say, ‘O mankind! truly I am a Messenger to you all from Allah…’ (7:159). All this makes the truthfulness of the community of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) as clear as the day. Fortunate are we that by being a part of the community we are associated to that ‘Testifer’ (Shahid) who came to expound the truthfulness of the great ‘Witness’ (Mushood) to the world. God sent him to this world to prove the truthfulness and superiority of the beautiful teaching of the Holy Qur’an. The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) carried this out as well as presented the lofty station and stature of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) to the world.

Prior to the Promised Messiah’s (on whom be peace) books, people felt the need for a testifier and those who had sincere concern for Islam were restless. The advent of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) was exactly on time. It was not that the need for someone was only felt at that time, even today people are looking for a reformer, a true and ardent devotee of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih said he had cited some details in this regard in his Jalsa Salana address, so he would not elaborate the subject now.

Every Ahmadi knows very well that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) was sent by God for the second phase of Islam. People outside our community who are decent and fair-minded also acknowledge that it is the Ahmadiyya community alone which is fulfilling the dues of Islam. It is true that in this age only the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) bears testimony to the truthfulness of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and it is only the community that he established which demonstrates the correct reaction to derision and affront aimed at the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). The reaction to such instances by other Muslims is fodder for the anti-Islam powers to exceed in their effrontery. For example, the so-called mullah passing Fatwa of violent nature etc. Whereas, fair-minded and decent people are somewhat embarrassed when they note the reaction of Ahmadis and condemn those who deride and insult Islam. An Ahmadi wrote to Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih that he attended an event in which a Christian lady speaker praised the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). Observing others appreciating the station of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) moved the Ahmadi to tears.

Indeed the reaction of an Ahmadi to any effrontery is to highlight the blessed life of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) to the world and to present the teaching of Islam to the world and tell the world that the way to salvation is now only through the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and the teaching of Islam alone shows the way to God. The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) had transformed the ignorant Bedouins into ambassadors of love and peace. Such were the miracles of Islam and the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and it is for the revival of this that his true and ardent devotee, the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) was sent, as illustrated by the verses of Surah Al Buruj.

Once the Testifier made his claim, how did the world, which at the time felt the need for exactly such a person, react? The aforementioned verses prophesised; when God will send the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) to embed the truthfulness of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) in hearts of people and to impart the beautiful teaching of the Holy Qur’an to people, he and his community will have to face hazardous difficulties. The very same people who had waited for such a reformer/testifier and the opponents will join forces to oppose the Promised One and will bitterly oppose him. Such is the state of affairs with these people. On one hand they bleat that someone is needed and on the other hand they exceed in opposition of the one who has come. God curses such people, but the believers are not to suffice on this. They will have to make sacrifices in any case and persecution will continue time and again. The progress and advancement of Ahmadiyyat, true Islam will in fact come to pass as an outcome of this persecution. The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) has drawn attention to this many times in his writings as well as in his pronouncements. The persecution faced by the Jama’at in many countries, especially in Pakistan where among other harassments now our students are being maltreated and some are expelled from universities on the basis of their faith, was foretold by God. It was stated that different types of fires will be kindled against us. Indeed, real fire was also kindled against us in the agitation of 1974 when Ahmadi family homes were lit up by opponents and the police watched by silently. The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) was informed that the Promised One of the second phase of Islam and his followers will be intensely persecuted, and the persecutors will also be Muslim. It is proven from Ahadith that Muslims will be in a deteriorated state and when God would ask the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) about this his answer would be the same as that of Jesus (on whom be peace) 5:118 that he was witness over them as long as he was among them and that they diverged after him.

The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) prepared us for these difficult times and in places has drawn attention to them forcefully. He writes:

‘But all those who remain steadfast till the end—they will be shaken with quakes of calamities, and battered with storms of misfortune, ridiculed and mocked by people, and hated and reviled by the world—shall at last come out victorious. And doors of Blessings shall be thrown open for them. God addressed me and said that I should inform my Jama‘at that those who believe and their belief is not adulterated with worldly considerations and is free from hypocrisy and cowardice and is not found wanting at any stage of obedience, such people are the favourites of God. And God says that indeed these are the ones whose station is that of Truth.’ (The Will, p. 12)

He also writes:

‘Truth will prevail. A new bright day will dawn again for Islam. Same as it did before. The sun of Islam will rise in full bloom, same as it did before. But this will not be at once. Imperative it is that this should not happen until we have proved our worth by devoted hard work, by offering our life-blood, by sacrificing our rest and peace, by accepting all indignities for the dignity of Islam. The new Life of Islam demands a great Sacrifice from us. What is this Sacrifice? It is our lives: on this Sacrifice depends now the Life of Islam, the Life of Mussalmans, the Manifestation of God in our time.’ (Victory of Islam, p. 8)

Indeed, the final triumph will be ours but we have to make endeavours for it. Our attention has been drawn that in order to safeguard our faith we should be prepared to burn in fire. Such fires are kindled in Pakistan time and again and in particular in the last two years the situation has worsened on an unparalleled scale. Never before has our Jama’at given sacrifice of live on this scale. However, these sacrifices herald triumphs and God has informed us of the triumphs to come. The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) drew our attention to the Companions of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and the calamities and mishaps they endured for the sake of faith. Yet, they did not rest by day or by night and accepted every difficulty in the cause of God and even sacrificed their lives.

Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih said that the Jama’at needs to fully appreciate this even today. In the last two years the Jama’at has given a lot of sacrifice of life. Someone has written in about the recent martyrdoms in Karachi that at the martyrdom of a young Ahmadi someone went to pay condolences to the family. A close female relative, either the mother or the sister of the martyr told them that they should be given felicitations that their family was granted martyrdom. Be it the martyrdoms of Lahore, or Mandi Bahauddin or Karachi or Ghatyalian, the spirit of sacrifice is evident everywhere. O’ enemies of Ahmadiyyat, you could not move any Ahmadi from their faith after dozens of martyrdoms of Lahore, you will not be able to shake the faith of the Ahmadis of Karachi. InshaAllah, Ahmadis understand this and will continue to understand and are ready to give any kind of sacrifice for the second phase of Islam requires sacrifices.

In the recent martyrdom attacks in Karachi a few Ahmadis were also injured, a couple of the injured are in critical condition. Yet, the situation has not shaken the family’s faith. The enemy is kindling fire and watching over, thus creating a situation of ‘As they sat by it’. An example of this is that when recently a family was attacked, the mullah or his accomplices even showed up at the hospital with the demand that the Ahmadis should not be treated. Such is their state of affairs and they do all this in the name of one who was ‘Mercy for all the worlds’. Indeed this is the crux of their cruelty that to cover their misdeeds they say they do it in his name; they will certainly be punished by God, Who states: ‘…for them is surely the punishment of Hell, and for them is the punishment of burning.’

Believers should rejoice, for them will be Paradise, shady gardens with flowing streams. In this world in his assumption the enemy is kindling fire and being cruel, but with God the believer will have cool shade and the opponents will have ceaseless fire. Ahmadis mostly demonstrate resolve in the face of adversity but at times some feel anxious. They should not be anxious. Their sacrifices were accepted 1500 earlier, when the Holy Qur’an was revealed and this is not an ordinary honour. Every Ahmadi, be they from Pakistan, Indonesia, a small village in India or an Arab country, whoever is experiencing persecution of the enemy, and every Ahmadi of Pakistan who is constantly persecuted because of the speculation that God forbid he or she does not believe in the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) or is against his finality of Prophethood or hurt is caused to them by constant abuse directed at the true and ardent devotee of the Prophet, their steadfastness and sacrifices make them recipients of Paradise.

A couple of days ago they published a wicked pamphlet filled with abuse which also had a photograph of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace). They distributed the pamphlet at a rally and people stamped on it, in their presumption countering supposed effrontery. However, their own effrontery will make them destined to the torment of Hell.

Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih said that he would lead funeral Prayers of the recent martyrs of Karachi. May God elevate their station and may every drop of the blood of each Ahmadi martyr increase our advancement million-fold. The prayer is that may in acceptance of their sacrifice God soon show us triumph. Prayers should be made for perfect healing of those who were injured in these attacks.

Saad Farooq sahib shaheed. He was martyred on 19 October. Born in Karachi in 1986, he had studied electronic engineering. He was married just a few days before his martyrdom. On 19 October he was travelling home after Friday Prayers on his motorbike while his family travelled in a car. Two masked motorbike riders opened fire on him. He was critically wounded. The assailants then opened fire on the family car and injured most of those in the car. His father continued to drive whilst severely injured, when he saw his son he stopped and carried his son to the car and drove to the hospital. Saad shaheed passed away at the hospital. He was a Moosi and his funeral has taken place in Rabwah. He had a most loving relationship with his parents and fulfilled all the dues of parental respect. He was very fond of donating blood. His widow has said that after their NIkah when they talked on the telephone (she is from USA) he would often wish to be granted martyrdom. The family tried to keep the news of his martyrdom from his injured father, but he told them he knew his son had passed away as a martyr and wanted to see his face. Who can harm people who have such sentiments? His father-in-law is critically ill in hospital; he is on a visit to Pakistan from USA for his daughter’s marriage.

Bashir Ahmad Bhatti sahib shaheed. He was martyred in Karachi on 23 October. He was sitting in his shop in the evening when two motorbike riders fired at him. He was rushed to hospital but was martyred on his way there. Bashir sahib was 67 years old and worked hard. He had brought up his children very well and leaves behind two sons and three daughters. May God be their Protector.

Dr Raja Abdul Hameed Khan sahib shaheed. He had come in the fold of Ahmadiyyat in 1994. Two motorbike riders came to his clinic in the evening. One of them entered the clinic and shot Dr sahib with a hand gun and Dr sahib was martyred on the spot. He was a courteous and compassionate person who served the Jama’at. Due to the recent troubles a few Ahmadi families moved houses but Dr. sahib said he was not afraid and said he wished for martyrdom. He asked his wife if she was frightened and she replied that she was not and desired martyrdom for her husband and for herself. His widow writes that she has three daughters. May God be their Protector.

Riaz Ahmad shaheed was martyred in Ghatyalian on 18 October. His family had some disputes with other families in the village and his older brother was also martyred in the past. He was not directly involved in the disputes but due to his services to the Jama’at many people were against him. Some maulwi newly arrived in the area riled those with whom his family had disputes to kill him under the guise of religious enmity and escape the rule of law, citing they had only killed a Qadiani. He was returning home after Isha when unknown persons fired at him and he was martyred. He had a sense of honour for the Jama’at, may God elevate his station.

Two other funeral Prayers in absentia announced were:

Abdul Rahman Al Jabali sahib from Saudi Arabia. He was 47 years old and has become an Ahmadi in 2010.

Izzat Abdus Sami sahib from Egypt. He passed away on 10 October.