The Prophet Muhammad is the fulfillment of Ibrahim’s du’a : Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali

In his discussion of the month of Rabee’ al-Awwaal, Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali discussed some of the virtues of the Prophet and his prophet-hood. During this discussion he mentioned some of the proofs foretelling Muhammad’s prophet-hood, and began by writing:

 الدليل الأول : دعوة أبيه إبراهيم عليه السلام ، و أشار بذلك إلى ما قص الله في كتابه عن إبراهيم و إسماعيل لأنهما قالا عند بناء البيت الذي بمكة : { ربنا تقبل منا إنك أنت السميع العليم * ربنا و اجعلنا مسلمين لك و من ذريتنا أمة مسلمة لك و أرنا مناسكنا و تب علينا إنك أنت التواب الرحيم * ربنا و ابعث فيهم رسولا منهم يتلو عليهم آياتك و يعلمهم الكتاب و الحكمة و يزكيهم إنك أنت العزيز الحكيم } ـ

The first proof: The supplication of his forefather Ibrahim (‘alaihi al-salaam), and that points to what Allah narrated in His Book about Ibrahim and Ismaa’eel that when they were building the House in Mecca they said,

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“We are not able to perform qiyaam al-lail”: Responses from the salaf

While discussing qiyaam al-lail (the voluntary night prayers) in his book Lataa’if al-Ma’aarif, Imam ibn Rajab al-Hanbali brings the following statements of the salaf concerning those who experience difficulty in performing this recommended act of ‘ibaadah:

قيل لابن مسعود رضي الله عنه : ما نستطيع قيام الليل, قال : أبعدتكم ذنوبكم. .

It was said to Ibn Mas’ood (raadiAllaahu ‘anhu), “We are not able to perform the qiyaam al-lail.” He replied, “Distance yourselves from your sins!”

وقيل للحسن : قد أعجزنا قيام الليل, قال : قيّدتكم خطاياكم.

And it was said to al-Hasan [al-Basri], “We have been made incapable of performing qiyaam al-lail.” He replied, “Restrict your sins!”

وقال فضيل بن عياض : إذا لم تقدر على قيام الليل وصيام النهار, فاعلم أنّك محرومٌ مُكَبَّلٌ, كبَّلَتْكَ خكيئتُكَ.

And Fudhail ibn ‘Iyaadh said, “If you are not able to pray during the night and fast during the day, then know that you have been deprived and detained, shackled by your own sins.”

وقال الحسن : إنّ العبد ليذنب الذنب فيُحرم به قيام الليل

And al-Hasan said, “If the slave committed a sin then he is prohibited from qiyaam al-lail because of it.”

[Lataa’if al-Ma’aarif pg. 98]

See also: Allah’s commendations for those who pray during the night

See also: ‘Ibad al-Rahman Part 2 – Steadfast Observance of Prayer: ‘Abd al-Razzaq al-Badr

The difference between sincere advising and shaming: Ibn Rajab

al-Haafidh Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali, in his monograph al-Farq bain al-Naseehah w’al-Ta’eer, devotes one section to the topic of “On the Difference between advising about one’s short-comings in order to return from that, and rebuking and scolding for one’s sins.” It reads as follows:

ومن هذا الباب أن يقال للرجل في وجهه ما يكرهه فإن كان هذا على وجه النصح فهو حسن وقد قال بعض السلف لبعض إخوانه: لا تنصحني حتى تقول في وجهي ما أكره.

And from this is that one would tell a man something that he disliked to his face, and if that was with the purpose of sincerely advising him, then that is good. And one of the Salaf said to his brother, “Do not advise me until you can say something to my face which I dislike.”

فإذا أخبر أحد أخاه بعيب ليجتنبه كان ذلك حسناً لمن أُخبر بعيب من عيوبه أن يعتذر منها إن كان له منها عذر وإن كان ذلك على وجه التوبيخ بالذنب فهو قبح مذموم.

Then if one of his brothers informs him of a short-coming in order for him to avoid it, then that is good for the one who was informed of one of his short-comings so that he can be wary of it, if it served as a warning for him. And if that [advising] was with the purpose of rebuking him for his sin, then that is distasteful and blameworthy.

وقيل لبعض السلف: أتحبُّ أن يخبرك أحد بعيوبك؟ فقال: إن كان يريد أن يوبخني فلا.

And it was said to one of the salaf, “Would you like for someone to inform you of your short-comings?” So he replied, “If he wanted to reprimand me, then no.” Continue reading

The Qur’an was revealed to be acted upon: Fudhail bin ‘Iyaadh

The following speech is recorded from Fudhail bin ‘Iyaadh:

إِنَّمَا نَزَلَ الْقُرْآنُ لِيُعْمَلَ بِهِ فَاتَّخَذَ النَّاسُ قِرَاءَتَهُ عَمَلا ، قَالَ : قِيلَ كَيْفَ الْعَمَلُ بِهِ ؟ ، قَالَ : أَيْ لِيُحِلُّوا حَلالَهُ وَيُحَرِّمُوا حَرَامَهُ ، وَيَأْتَمِرُوا بِأَوَامِرِهِ ، وَيَنْتَهُوا عَنْ نَوَاهِيهِ ، وَيَقِفُوا عِنْدَ عَجَائِبِهِ

“The Qur’an was only sent down in order to be acted upon, but people have taken just reciting it as enough of a deed.” He was asked, “How is it acted upon?” He replied, “They should treat as halaal what it makes halaal and treat as haraam what it makes haraam, they should take on its commandments, and abstain from what it forbids, and they should stop to ponder its wonders.”
[Iqtidhaa’ al-‘Ilm al-‘Amal, hadeeth #112]