In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Tafseer Surah Aal-Imran Ayaat 31-32
In the previous ayaat, we learned about Tawheed and belief in the Oneness of Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala, whoever denies this has disbelieved. The ayaat under study talk about another important part of our emaan [faith] – belief in and following the path of Prophet Muhammad salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Whoever believes in Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala but refuses to believe in Prophet Muhammad has incomplete or corrupt faith.
This ayah judges against those who claim to love Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala yet do not follow the way of Muhammad salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Such people are not sincere in their claim until they follow the Shar’iah [Islamic law] of Muhammad salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and his religion in all his statements, actions and conditions.
It is recorded in the Saheeh that the Messenger of Allah salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said,
مَنْ عَمِلَ عَمَلًا لَيْسَ عَلَيْهِ أَمْرُنَا فَهُوَ رَد
“Whoever commits an act that does not conform with our matter (religion), then it will be rejected of him.”
This is why Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala said here,
قُلْ إِن كُنتُمْ تُحِبُّونَ اللَّهَ فَاتَّبِعُونِى يُحْبِبْكُمُ اللَّهُ
“Say, [O Muhammad], ‘If you should love Allah, then follow me, [so] Allah will love you…’” meaning, what you will earn is much more than what you sought in loving Him, for Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala will love you. Al-Hasan Al-Basri and several scholars among the Salaf commented, “Some people claimed that they love Allah. So Allah tested them with this ayah.
What is the reward for following the Messenger salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam?
“Allah will love you and forgive you your sins.” SubhanAllah! Yet, how ignorant we are of the Sunnah and treat it lightly.
Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala says next, “Say, ‘Obey Allah and the Messenger.’ But if they turn away – then indeed, Allah does not like the disbelievers,” thus, testifying that defiance of the Messenger’s way constitutes Kufr. Indeed, Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala does not like whoever does this, even if he claims that he loves Allah and seeks a means of approach to Him, unless, and until, he follows the unlettered Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, the Final Messenger from Allah to the two creations: mankind and the Jinn. This is the Prophet who, if the previous prophets and messengers were to have been alive during his time, they would have no choice but to follow, obey him, and to abide by his Law.
-We learn the virtue of learning and following the Sunnah of Rasoolullah salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. We can make big claims about our love for Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala. In this ayah He gives us a criterion that if you love Me then “follow” the Messenger salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. How can we follow him, if don’t know his Seerah and Sunnah?
-We take Sunnah so lightly that it’s only a Sunnah and not an obligatory act, yet Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala tells us that following the path of Rasoolullah salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam will result in Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala loving us and forgiving our sins. Who would not want to get closer to Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala and be loved “by Him?” What an honor!
-If we implement the Sunnah in our daily life such as staying in a state of ablution [wudhu] at all times, brushing our teeth with miswak, reciting the athkar that the Prophet salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam taught us we will be doing our chores and at the same time earning rewards for them. We would be in a constant state of ibadah.
-Someone said: The Sign of one’s love for Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala is one’s love for the Qur’an. The Sign of one’s love for Rasoolullah salAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is one’s love for the Sunnah. Now we can determine where we stand, and how true our love is?
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