Be ready for tomorrow

يَوْمَ يَجْمَعُ ٱللَّهُ ٱلرُّسُلَ فَيَقُولُ مَاذَآ أُجِبْتُمْ ۖ قَالُوا۟ لَا عِلْمَ لَنَآ ۖ إِنَّكَ أَنتَ عَلَّٰمُ ٱلْغُيُوبِ

[Be warned of] the Day when Allah will assemble the messengers and say, ‘What was the response you received?’ They will say, ‘We have no knowledge. Indeed, it is You who is Knower of the unseen’ (5:109)

Evaluating the response to the delivery

Messengers delivered the message to the people and everyone will be asked from top to bottom, messengers to lay people, about the message they received.

Everyone will be assembled. The top group whom Allah selected to deliver His message will be gathered and Allah will ask them ‘mada ujibtum?’ ‘What response did you receive?’

This is a heavy question. This is an accountancy audit.

Measuring outcomes

How do you measure any result? If you have a project or plan or strategy with aims and objectives, once the project is delivered in order to know if it was a success, you have to do an assessment and evaluation. Allah Almighty knows the details of details.

When we deliver courses we have a feedback form, and we ask how was the delivery?

When asked ‘what was the response?’ The messengers will say they have no knowledge of this, because people’s hearts are in Allah’s hands. People might say they follow you, but they might be lying. Allah Almighty has full access because He created everyone and knows what is in their hearts.

As we saw in the story of the angels, when they questioned the creation of Adam, Allah replied, ‘I know and you know not.’

And [mention, O Muhammad], when your Lord said to the angels, “Indeed, I will make upon the earth a successive authority.” They said, “Will You place upon it one who causes corruption therein and sheds blood, while we declare Your praise and sanctify You?” Allah said, “Indeed, I know that which you do not know.” (2:30)

Then Allah Almighty taught Adam the names of everything. And when he asked the angels to name them, they said they have no knowledge except what He taught them.

And He taught Adam the names – all of them. Then He showed them to the angels and said, “Inform Me of the names of these, if you are truthful.”

They said, “Exalted are You; we have no knowledge except what You have taught us. Indeed, it is You who is the Knowing, the Wise.” (2:31-32)

The one who has full knowledge is Allah. Don’t be overwhelmed by search engines and artificial intelligence. The reality is that we have very limited knowledge and the proof is the coronavirus, we don’t know how to get rid of it. We are still exploring. We cannot see it by our naked eye or even the normal microscope. And it has put the whole world on hold.

Accountability

Even prophets are accountable and will be held to account on the Day of Judgement. If they are held to account, we will be as well. Don’t hide the truth. Don’t lie. Don’t sin. You will have to face Allah Almighty.

In Surat al Baqarah:

وَكَذَٰلِكَ جَعَلْنَاكُمْ أُمَّةً وَسَطًا لِّتَكُونُوا شُهَدَاءَ عَلَى النَّاسِ وَيَكُونَ الرَّسُولُ عَلَيْكُمْ شَهِيدًا ۗ

“And thus we have made you a just nation (ummah) that you will be witnesses over the people and the Messenger will be a witness over you…” (2:143)

Our ummah will witness and confirm that the Prophet (peace be on him) delivered his testimony.

In his last sermon, which was among the last speeches he gave, delivered during the farewell hajj, he addressed the congregation of 120,000 companions, from his camel.

It was one of three khutbahs he delivered on Arafat, (one in Arafat and two in Mina)

Two or three companions, would listen to his speech and then repeat it to the people further back in the crowd as it was not possible for all of them to hear him. However, one of the companions said he could hear the voice of the Prophet (peace be on him) from his tent. Scholars have discussed this and commented that this means the Prophet (peace be on him) would pause and the ‘repeaters’ echoed him, or Allah Almighty boosted his voice so that he could be heard from very far away. Both are possibilities.

He asked them:

Remember you will be asked about me. What will you say?

The Prophet (peace be on him) was aware that Allah would pose this question to them, in the akhirah so he posed it to them in dunya. They replied beautifully:

‘We bear witness that you have delivered the message, and you delivered the trust and you have given the best advice to the ummah.

Then he pointed his finger to the sky and said:

Oh Allah bear witness. Oh Allah bear witness. Oh Allah bear witness

He was preparing to meet Allah and he did not live long after that. Just a few weeks. He was close to death.

We have no knowledge. You have full knowledge of the unseen.

Be prepared

We have to be prepared for that question. Everyone will be asked common questions.

Ibn Mas’ud reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

The son of Adam will not be dismissed from his Lord on the Day of Resurrection until he is questioned about five issues: his life and how he lived it, his youth and how he used it, his wealth and how he earned it and he spent it, and how he acted on his knowledge. (Tirmidhi)

In that hadith narrated in Tirmidhi and others, Allah will ask each one of us about our salah. He will ask about how we utilised our health, our wealth and our lifespan.

Parents will be asked about their offspring. Leaders will be asked about their subjects. Were they just rulers or oppressive rulers? Did they fill pockets and float on yachts, and live in palaces and leave their people to die from hunger?

Everyone in his position will be asked specific questions. We need to be prepared for these questions and we do not know when our time will be up.

We should be prepared for the end. We should leave a good legacy.

This is a scary question and the truth is that no we are not prepared. Death is closer to us than we think. Yesterday we had people with us, whom we have lost today. Similarly with any of us, let’s do our best to prepare what we have done with our time and children and our rizq and knowledge.

What can we do to be prepared?

First be aware that we can die at any time and plan ahead for that.

If we keep forgetting about this and thinking we have time then we postpone preparation.

Just as you pack for your holiday, when you know you are leaving, you pack. We don’t know the exact time we will leave this dunya, it might be tomorrow or after tomorrow, so we have to pack for the akhirah now.

Ensure you have written your will. Don’t leave things hanging. Financial issues are the most important. Allah does not forgive them, so ensure you have rectified your financial matters. Sort out your grudges with your relatives, parents and siblings. You have to resolve them. Sort out your relationship with Allah.

Salah

Why do we rush our salah? To go where? Allah Almighty is the most important being in our life. Nothing is more important than Him. Salah needs to be given time. Give more time to salah than other things. I tell you from experience. When you get salah right, the rest will follow. This is where preparation starts. Everything else follows. If you are rushing salah, you are not prepared for death. When you start seeing a difference in your salah then other things will follow.

We ask Allah to make us among the people who are prepared. Ameen.

Shaykh Haytham Tamim 9th September 2020. Delivered to the Tafseer Class.

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Shaykh Haytham Tamim is the founder and main teacher of the Utrujj Foundation. He has provided a leading vision for Islamic learning in the UK, which has influenced the way Islamic knowledge is disseminated. He has orchestrated the design and delivery of over 200 unique courses since Utrujj started in 2001.His extensive expertise spans over 30 years across the main Islamic jurisprudence schools of thought. He has studied with some of the foremost scholars in their expertise; he holds some of the highest Ijazahs (certificates) in Quran, Hadith (the Prophetic traditions) and Fiqh (Islamic rulings). His own gift for teaching was evident when he gave his first sermon to a large audience at the age of 17 and went on to serve as a senior lecturer of Islamic transactions and comparative jurisprudence at the Islamic University of Beirut (Shariah College).He has continued to teach; travelling around the UK, Europe and wider afield, and won the 2015 BISCA award (British Imams & Scholars Contributions & Achievements Awards) for Outstanding Contribution to Education and Teaching.