[Friday Sermon] Returning To Allah To Lift Our Tribulations, Calamities And Trials!

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By Imam Murtadha Gusau

In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful

All praise is due to Allah, and may His peace and blessings be upon Allah’s Messenger, his Companions and whosoever follows his guidance.

Dear brothers and sisters! Know that, the trials and tribulations and various calamities that befall and afflict the Muslims Ummah, are caused by the disobedience of Allah Almighty.

O Allah, Your forgiveness is broader than our sins, so forgive us. Your mercy is more hopeful to us than our deeds, so have mercy on us. Our Lord, we have wronged ourselves and confessed our sins, so forgive all our sins, O Most Merciful of the Merciful.

Respected brothers and sisters! Wallahi calamities cannot be repelled, and misfortunes cannot be lifted except by taking the righteous, sincere and appropriate means. Among the means for repelling and lifting calamities is returning to Allah Almighty. Allah, the Exalted, said in the Qur’an:

“Corruption has appeared throughout the land and sea by [reason of] what the hands of people have earned so He may let them taste part of [the consequence of] what they have done that perhaps they will return [to righteousness]. Say, ‘Travel through the land and observe how was the end of those before them. Most of them were associators [of others with Allah]. So direct your face (self) towards the correct religion before a Day comes from Allah of which there is no repelling. That Day, they will be divided.” [Qur’an, 30: 41-43]

And Allah, the Sublime, said in the Qur’an:

“And We tested them with good [times] and bad that perhaps they would return [to obedience].” [Qur’an, 7: 168]

And He, the Exalted, said in the Qur’an:

“And We seized them with a severe punishment that perhaps they would return to faith.” [Qur’an, 43: 48]

And He, the Exalted, said in the Qur’an:

“And We will surely let them taste the nearer punishment short of the greater punishment that perhaps they will repent.” [Qur’an, 32: 21]

So, O Muslims Ummah, return to the obedience of Allah and avoid disobedience of Him. Then Allah Almighty, will help you, defend you and lift calamities and misfortunes from you. Among the reasons for lifting misfortunes is knowing Allah Almighty in times of ease. Imam At-Tirmidhi and others narrated from Ibn Abbas that the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said to him:

“Safeguard [the commands of] Allah, [and then] He will protect you. Safeguard [the commands of] Allah; you will find Him before you.”

And in another narration he said:

“Safeguard [the commands of] Allah; you will find Him in front of you. Know Allah in times of prosperity, He will remember you in times of adversity.” [Tirmidhi]

And for this reason, some of the righteous predecessors (As-Salafus Salih), may Allah have mercy on them, said:

“Whoever knows Allah in times of ease will be remembered in times of adversity.”

Dear brothers and sisters! Among the causes of repelling calamities and misfortunes is humbling oneself to Allah Almighty, when calamity strikes. Allah, the Exalted, said:

“And We certainly sent [messengers] to nations before you, [O Muhammad], and We seized them with poverty and hardship that perhaps they might humble themselves [to Us]. Then why, when Our punishment came to them, did they not humble themselves? But their hearts became hardened, and Shaitan (Satan) made attractive to them that which they were doing.” [Qur’an, 6: 42-43]

And Allah, the Sublime, said:

“And We seized them with punishment, but they did not humble themselves to their Lord, nor did they invoke [Him] with submission to His will.” [Qur’an, 23: 76]

And He, the Sublime, said:

“And We sent to no city a Prophet [who was denied] except that We seized its people with poverty and hardship that they might humble themselves [to Allah].” [Qur’an, 7: 94]

And He, the Sublime, said:

“And cause not corruption upon the earth after its reformation. And invoke Him in fear and aspiration. Indeed, the mercy of Allah is near to the doers of good.” [Qur’an, 7: 56]

Respected servants of Allah! Among the reasons for lifting misfortunes is supplicating to Allah Almighty (Du’a), to relieve distress. For Allah does not turn away those supplicating to Him, nor does He disappoint those who place hope in Him. So supplicate to Allah Almighty, and humble yourselves before Him.

Among the reasons for lifting misfortunes is placing trust in Allah (At-Tawakkul), the Almighty. The essence of this is entrusting matters to Him while undertaking the legal, lawful and permissible means (Asbab/Sabab), with certainty that Allah is over all things able. The One who has the power of creation and command, and the One who says “Be,” and it is (Kun Fa Ya Kun), and the One for whom what He wills happens, and what He does not will does not happen. So the Muslims should always and forever attach their heart to Allah Almighty, with longing and fear, hope and love. For whoever places their trust in Allah, He will suffice them in their religious and worldly matters In Shaa Allah. Allah Almighty, said:

“And whoever relies upon Allah – then He is sufficient for him. Indeed, Allah will accomplish His purpose. Allah has already set for everything a [decreed] extent.” [Qur’an, 65: 3]

And Allah the Almighty said:

“But whoever relies upon Allah – then indeed, Allah is Exalted in Might and Wise.” [Qur’an, 8: 49]

Some great Islamic scholars said:

“I am astonished at four types of people being heedless of four Qur’anic verses: I am astonished at how those afflicted with harm, can be heedless of the words of Allah, the Exalted, where He said: “And [mention] Prophet Yunus, when he called to his Lord, ‘Indeed, adversity has touched me, and you are the Most Merciful of the merciful. So We responded to him and removed what afflicted him of adversity. And We gave him [back] his family, twice [as many], as a mercy from Us and a reminder for the worshippers.” [Qur’an, 21: 83-84] I am astonished at how those afflicted with sadness and sorrow, can be heedless of the words of Allah, the Exalted, where He said: “And [mention] the man of the fish, when he went off in anger and thought that We would not decree [anything] upon him. And he called out within the darknesses, ‘There is no deity except You; exalted are You. Indeed, I have been of the wrongdoers. So We responded to him and saved him from the distress. And thus do We save the believers.” [Qur’an, 21:87-88] I am astonished at how those whom people plot against, can be heedless of the words of Allah, the Exalted, where He said: “And I entrust my affair to Allah. Indeed, Allah is Seeing of [His] servants. So Allah protected him from the evils they plotted.” [Qur’an, 40: 44-45] I am astonished at how those who are fearful, can be heedless of the words of Allah, the Exalted, where He said: “Sufficient for us is Allah, and [He is] the best Disposer of affairs. So they returned with favour from Allah and bounty, no harm having touched them.” [Qur’an, 3: 173-174].”

Dear servants of Allah! Placing trust in Allah is a means of protection from evil. The Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) said, as reported by Tirmidhi and others:

“Whoever says – that is: when he leaves his house – ‘In the Name of Allah, I place my trust in Allah, there is no might or power except by Allah. (Bismillah, tawakkaltu Alallah, la hawla wa la quwwata illa billah)’ it will be said to him: ‘You have been sufficed and protected,’ and shaitan (satan) will become distant from him.”

And among the means of averting calamities and tribulations is to be conscious of Allah. Allah Almighty says:

“And whoever is conscious of Allah – He will make for him a way out. And will provide for him from where he does not expect. And whoever relies upon Allah – then He is sufficient for him.” [Qur’an, 65: 2-3]

Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi (may Allah have mercy on him) said that:

“Whoever desires continuous well-being shall attach themselves to Allah.”

And Abu Sulaiman Al-Darani (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

“Whoever excels (in acts of obedience) at night, will be sufficed during the day.”

So be conscious of Allah, O Muslims, and advise one another in that regard.

It was said to a man from the Tabi’in (those who came after the companions) at the time of his death:

“Advise us.” He said: “I advise you with the last part of Surah An-Nahl: “Indeed, Allah is with those who fear Him and those who are doers of good.” [Qur’an, 16: 128].”

And among the means of lifting calamities and misfortunes is doing good towards others. For doing good wards off bad incidents, and secret charity (sadaqah) extinguishes the wrath of the Lord. The Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:

“And charity extinguishes the Lord’s wrath.” [See Sahih Al Jami’u]

Also the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said:

“Charity extinguishes sin just as water extinguishes fire.” [Sunan Ibn Majah]

My beloved people! Doing good comes in many forms such as giving gifts, offering charity, helping others, meeting needs, being kind or bearing a debt or part of it, or other acts of goodness. Allah Almighty says:

“Is the reward for good [anything] but good?” [Qur’an, 55: 60]

And Allah Almighty says:

“Indeed, the mercy of Allah is near to the doers of good.” [Qur’an, 7: 56]

And Allah Almighty says:

“There is not upon the doers of good any cause [for blame]. And Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” [Qur’an, 9: 91]

So do good, O Muslims, and do not belittle any act of goodness, for Allah does not let the reward of the doers of good go to waste. Indeed, Allah is with the doers of good.

My dear brothers and sisters! Allah Almighty says:

“O you who have believed, be conscious of Allah and believe in His Messenger; He will [then] give you a double portion of His mercy and make for you a light by which you will walk and forgive you; and Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” [Qur’an, 57: 28]

And one of the means of lifting calamities and misfortunes is seeking forgiveness. Seeking forgiveness pleases the Lord and is a refuge from His wrath. Allah Almighty says:

“But Allah would not punish them while you, [O Muhammad], are among them, and Allah would not punish them while they seek forgiveness.” [Qur’an, 8: 33]

Respected brothers and sisters! Wallahi whoever is consistent in seeking forgiveness, Allah will make for them a way out of every distress, a relief from every hardship, and provide for them from where they do not expect. Allah Almighty says:

“Why do you not seek forgiveness of Allah that you may receive mercy?” [Qur’an, 27: 46]

And among the means of lifting calamities is repenting to Allah. Allah Almighty says:

“If they repent, it is better for them.” [Qur’an, 9: 74]

And Allah Almighty says:

“Indeed, Allah loves those who are constantly repentant and loves those who purify themselves.” [Qur’an, 2: 222]

Ali Ibn Abi Talib (may Allah be pleased with him) said:

“No calamity descends except because of a sin, and it is not lifted except through repentance.”

So repent to your Lord and seek His forgiveness, for He says:

“And if you turn away, then indeed, I fear for you the punishment of a great Day. To Allah is your return, and He is over all things competent.” [Qur’an, 11: 3]

Allah Almighty said:

“And whatever of misfortune befalls you, it is because of what your hands have earned. And He pardons much.” [Qur’an, 42: 30]

And He Almighty said:

Verily! Allah will not change the good condition of a people as long as they do not change their state of goodness themselves (by committing sins and by being ungrateful and disobedient to Allah). But when Allah wills a people’s punishment, there can be no turning back of it, and they will find besides Him no protector.” [Qur’an, 13: 11]

Narrated Ibn Umar (RA) he said:

“I heard Allah’s Messenger (Peace be upon him) say, “If you sell anything on credit to anyone, on the condition that you will buy it back for a lower price (al-Inah), take hold of the tails of cattle, become pleased with agriculture and give up Jihad – Allah will make disgrace prevail over you and will not remove it from you till you return to your religion.” [Reported by Abu Dawud from the narration of Nafi on the authority of Ibn Umar (RA)]

I ask Allah Almighty to lift calamities, tribulations, afflictions and trials from us, from Muslims everywhere and from all the people of Nigeria and the world in general, ameen.

O Allah, protect us from the evils and consequences of our sins, misdeeds and transgressions. Indeed Allah is All Hearing, Answering.

I conclude with this and send prayers of blessings and peace upon our beloved Prophet as our Lord commanded, He said:

“Indeed, Allah confers blessing upon the Prophet, and His angels [ask Him to do so]. O you who have believed, ask [Allah to confer] blessing upon him and ask [Allah to grant him] peace.” [Qur’an, 33: 56]

O Allah, guide us with those whom You have guided, grant us well-being among those You have granted well-being, be an ally to us along with those whom You are an ally to, and bless what You have bestowed upon us, and save us from the evil of what You have decreed. For verily You decree and none can decree over You. He whom You support can never be humiliated. Glory is to You, our Lord, You are Blessed and Exalted.

O Allah, We ask You for all that is good, in this world and in the Hereafter, what we know and what we do not know.

O Allah, we seek refuge with You from all evil, in this world and in the Hereafter, what we know and what we do not know.

O Allah, we ask You for the good that Your servant and Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) has asked You for, and we seek refuge with You from the evil from which Your servant and Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) sought refuge.

O Allah, we ask You for Paradise and for that which brings one closer to it, in word and deed, and we seek refuge in You from Hell and from that which brings one closer to it, in word and deed. And we ask You to make every decree that You decree concerning us good.

Dear servants of Allah! Indeed, Allah orders justice and good conduct and giving to relatives and forbids immorality and bad conduct and oppression. He admonishes you that perhaps you will be reminded.

Remember Allah, the Great – He will remember you. Thank Him for His favours – He will increase you therein. And seek forgiveness from Him – He will forgive you. And be conscious of Him – He will provide you a way out of difficult matters. And, establish the prayer.

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the worlds. May the peace, blessings and salutations of Allah be upon our noble Messenger, Muhammad (Peace be upon him), and upon his family, his Companions and his true and sincere followers.

Murtadha Muhammad Gusau is the Chief Imam of: Nagazi-Uvete Jumu’ah Mosque; and Late Alhaji Abdur-Rahman Okene Mosque, Okene, Kogi State, Nigeria. He can be reached via: gusauimam@gmail.com; or +2348038289761.

This Friday sermon (Jumu’ah Khutbah) was prepared for delivery today Friday, Rabi’ul Thani 26, 1445 AH (November 10, 2023).