The Messenger of Allah (saw) was travelling with Mu‘adh ibn Jabal one day. He (saw) said, “O Mu‘adh!” Mu‘adh ibn Jabal (ra) replied, “Yes, o Messenger of Allah! Your word is my command!” This dialogue between the two was repeated three times and then he (saw) said, “Whoever sincerely testifies that there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is His messenger, Allah will save him from the Hellfire.”[i]
The kalimat al-shahadah is the essence of faith and the first pillar of Islam. It is a covenant between Allah (swt) and us. It is our commitment that we will be in the pursuit of our Lord’s (swt) approval and that we will not stray from the path of the Qur’an.
The kalimat al-shahadah is a promise between our Prophet (saw) and us. With this promise, we declare that embracing his (saw) sunnah is a requirement of our faith. We acknowledge once again that we may be able to attain the pleasure of Allah (swt) through obedience to His Messenger (saw).
The kalimat al-shahadah is a lofty deed, a meritorious dhikr, and a wonderful du‘a. With the kalimat al-shahadah, we as the ummah of the Prophet Muhammad (saw) surrender to Allah (swt), the Lord of the worlds, and attain salvation. We liberate ourselves from the enslavement of the Satan and our nafs, and thereby enjoy true freedom. We grow safe and certain of every kind of evil, trouble, and misfortune. With this declaration of tawhid, we absolve ourselves of the grave’s wrath and the retribution on the Day of the Resurrection. It is with this remark that the gates of Heaven open. It is with this statement that one may be honored with the Beauty of Allah (Jamalullah).
I would like to conclude this Friday’s khutbah with the following du‘a Allah the Almighty (swt) has taught us: “O our Lord! Indeed we have heard a caller calling to faith, [saying], ‘Believe in your Lord’, and we have believed. O our Lord! So forgive us our sins and remove from us our misdeeds and cause us to die with the righteous.”[ii]
[i] Bukhari, ‘Ilm, 49.
[ii] Al-i ‘Imran, 3/193.