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 Christians need protection, not persecution

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PostSubject: Christians need protection, not persecution   Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:50 pm

Christians need protection, not persecution




“A-úthu billáhi minash shaytánir rajeem. Bismilláhir rahmánir raheem

Al hamdu lillahi nahmaduhu wanasta’eenahu, wanastagh-firuhu, wanatoobu ilayhi, wana’oothu Billaahi min shuroori an-fusinaa, wamin sayyi aati a’maalinaa. May- Yahdillahu fa huwal muhtad, wa may- yudlill falan tajidaa lahu waliyan murshida. Wa ash-hadu an Laa ilaaha ill-Alláh, wahdahoo laa shareeka lah, wa ash-hadu anna Muhammadan ‘abduhoo warasooluh”

All Praise is due to Alláh, We praise Him and we seek help from Him. We ask forgiveness from Him. We repent to Him; and we seek refuge in Him from our own evils and our own bad deeds. Anyone who is guided by Alláh, he is indeed guided; and anyone who has been left astray, will find no one to guide him. I bear witness that there is no god but Alláh, the Only One without any partner; and I bear witness that Muhammad, sws, is His servant, and His messenger.

Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem! Ya Ay-yuhal-latheena ‘aamanut taqul-laaha, haqqa tuqaatihee wala tamu tun-na, il-la wa antum Muslimoon.”

O You who believe, – Fear Allah, as He should be feared, and die not except as Muslims.

Ya Ay-yuhal-latheena ‘aamanut taqul-laaha, wa qooloo qawlan sadeedaa. Yuslih-lakum a’maalakum wa yaghfir lakum thunoobakum, wamay yu-til-laaha warasoolah, faqad faaza fawzan atheemaa.”

O You who believe, – Be aware of Allah, and speak a straightforward word. He will forgive your sins and repair your deeds. And whoever takes Allah and His Prophet as a guide, has already achieved a mighty victory.

In the opening verse of Sura An-Nisaa’, Allah says:

O mankind! Show reverence towards your Guardian-Lord Who created you from a single person, created, of like nature, his mate and from the two of them scattered (like seeds) countless men and women;― Be conscious of Allah, through Whom ye demand your mutual (rights) and (show reverence towards) the wombs (that bore you): for surely, Allah ever watches over you.

My Dear Sisters and Brothers,

There has been an appalling rise in violence against Christians in some Muslim countries. Churches have been set on fire, some Christians have been accused of blasphemy and some have been attacked in the most brutal manner. This violence must stop. It is cruel, inhumane, unjust and it is totally against the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad sws. If you look to our prophetic role model, you will see that he not only treated followers of the earlier scriptures, the ahle kitaab, [people of the Book] with the utmost respect, but he also urged his followers to do the same. Prophet Muhammad sws guaranteed the protection of other religions under Muslim rule. In a well known Hadith he said that anyone who kills a dhimmi, that is, a non-Muslim living in a Muslim land, he will not even smell the fragrance of paradise. The bigot and the zealot are deluded, believing they are doing a service to Islam by harming others, when in fact they do the work of Shaitaan. The true believer, the servant of the All Merciful, suffers from no such delusions. The true believer knows that Allah chooses to guide whom He pleases, and He leaves to stray whom He pleases. The true believer enjoys inner peace, emotional maturity and spiritual generosity. The true believer respects others, cares for others’ wellbeing. The true believer is the one in whom all of mankind will find a sanctuary, a safe haven, for their lives and property. In another hadith Prophet Muhammad said that

“A Muslim is one from whose tongue and hands other Muslims are safe. A Mu’min (true believer) is one in whom all mankind has a sanctuary for life and property”

Let us then try to be servants of the All Merciful. Let us follow the true path of the Prophetic Sunnah, and stay away from the crooked path of Shaitaan, who will constantly urge us to harm others in the name of Islam.

Prophet Muhammad had so much respect for Christians that he once offered a delegation from Najran to do their prayers in his mosque! How many of us Muslims today will follow that Sunnah? How many mosques anywhere in the Muslim world will allow Christians to pray there? Yet there are so many good examples of Christians showing Muslims kindness and hospitality. So many Jumu’ah prayers would not be possible, here and elsewhere, without the help of a local church or church hall. Right here at Royal Holloway University, we often use the Jurgens Centre, which belongs to the local Catholic Church. They have never refused us a Jumuah, or Eid prayer, whenever the hall was available. Should we then not at least speak out firmly against any injustice that is done to Christians in Muslim lands? I hope that Muslims everywhere will do their best to stop violence against Christians and other faith communities. We should utterly condemn any atrocities committed in the name of Islam, and we should offer no excuses for these criminal acts.

We must remember that when we protect people of other faiths we are not just doing an optional act of generosity or demonstrating so called ‘religious tolerance’ on our part. It’s really an Islamic duty, a clear imperative supported by the Quran and the Prophetic Sunnah.

Let us examine what the Quran has to say about respecting Christians and followers of the Jewish faith:

“La ikraha fid deen”

“Let there be no compulsion in matters of faith.” Al Baqara (2:256)

“Surely those who believe, and those who are Jews, and the Christians, and the Sabians, whoever believes in Allāh and the Last day and does good, they shall have their reward from their Lord, and there is no fear for them, nor shall they grieve.” Al Baqara [2:62]

“And do not argue with the People of the Book unless it be in a way that is better, except with those of them who do wrong. But say, ‘We believe in the Revelation which has come down to us and in that which came down to you. Our God and your God is One; and it is to Him we submit (in Islam).’” Al Ankaboot (29:46)

“Allah forbids you not, with regard to those who fight you not for (your) Faith nor drive you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them: for Allah loves those who are just.” Quran Al Mumtahina 60:08

“Innalláha wa malaaikata yusallúna alan nabi. Yá ay yuhal latheena ámanu sallú alayhi wasalli mú tas leema. Allahumma salli alá Muhammad, wa ala áli Muhammad, kama salayta ala Ibrahim, wa ala ali Ibrahim. Allahumma barik ala Muhammad, kama barakta ala Ibrahim, wa ala ali ibrahim. Fil ála meen, innaka hameedun majeed.”

Second Khutbah:

“Soob’ hanallahi wal hamdu lillah, wala hawla wala quwwata illah billah yu althi yual theem”

Glory to Allah! Praise to Allah! There is no power and no strength except from Allah!

My dear sisters and brothers,

During the early years of Prophet Muhammad’s preaching in Makka, the Muslims suffered so much hatred and violence that a delegation was sent to Ethiopia. These were Islam’s first asylum seekers. They were welcomed by a just and generous Christian king, the Negus of Abyssinia who took care of them at a time when Islam faced mortal danger. Differences in faith did not matter. The king later became a Muslim.

An amazing document still exists today, signed by the Prophet’s own hand. This document is known as the ‘Charter of Privileges to the Christians’ and a facsimile is held in St Catherine’s Monastery in the Sinai desert, in Egypt. The original document is in the Topkapi Museum, in Istanbul.

Here is a translation of the Charter of Privileges:

This is a message from Muhammad ibn Abdullah, as a covenant to those who adopt Christianity, near and far, we are with them.
Verily I, the servants, the helpers, and my followers defend them, because Christians are my citizens; and by Allah! I hold out against anything that displeases them.
No compulsion is to be on them.
Neither are their judges to be removed from their jobs nor their monks from their monasteries.
No one is to destroy a house of their religion, to damage it, or to carry anything from it to the Muslims’ houses.
Should anyone take any of these, he would spoil God’s covenant and disobey His Prophet. Verily, they are my allies and have my secure charter against all that they hate.
No one is to force them to travel or to oblige them to fight.
The Muslims are to fight for them.
If a female Christian is married to a Muslim it is not to take place without her approval. She is not to be prevented from visiting her church to pray.
Their churches are to be respected. They are neither to be prevented from repairing them nor the sacredness of their covenants.
No one of the nation (Muslims) is to disobey the covenant till the Last Day (end of the world).

This charter of privileges has been honoured and faithfully applied by many Muslim regimes throughout the centuries. Those who ‘spoil God’s Covenant’ and disobey clear instructions from Prophet Muhammad will have to answer to Almighty Allah. Let us therefore show respect and love for fellow believers among the ‘People of the earlier Scriptures.’ This is what Allah commands us to do, and for more than 14 centuries, Prophet Muhammad’s letter has reminded us all of this Covenant.

Brothers and sisters, to conclude our khutbah:

InnaAllaha, Yamuru bil adel, wal ihsaan, wa eetaa-i zil qurba; wa yanha anil fuhshaa-i, wal munkari walbaghi; ya-idzukhum lallakum tathak-karoon. (Sura 16:90),

“Surely Allah commands justice, good deeds and generosity to others and to relatives; and He forbids all shameful deeds, and injustice and rebellion: He instructs you, so that you may be reminded.”

Fadth kuroonee adth kurkum, wash kuroolee walaa tak furoon [2:152].

“and remember Me: I will remember you. Be grateful to Me, and do not reject faith.”

wala thikrul-Laahi akbar, Wal-Laahu ya’lamu maa tasna’oon.” [29:45].

“and without doubt, Remembrance of Allah is the Greatest Thing in life, and Allah knows the deeds that you do.”

Ameen. Aqeemus salaah



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