Betrayed by your brothers

Betrayed by your brothers

In Surat az-Zukhruf, Allah Almighty says:

لَقَدۡ جِئۡنَـٰكُم بِٱلۡحَقِّ وَلَـٰكِنَّ أَكۡثَرَكُمۡ لِلۡحَقِّ كَـٰرِهُونَ

أَمۡ أَبۡرَمُوۤا۟ أَمۡراً فَإِنَّا مُبۡرِمُونَ

أَمْ يَحْسَبُونَ أَنَّا لَا نَسْمَعُ سِرَّهُمْ وَنَجْوَىٰهُم ۚ بَلَىٰ وَرُسُلُنَا لَدَيْهِمْ يَكْتُبُونَ ٨٠

Indeed We have brought the truth (the Qur’an) to you, but most of you hate the truth.

Or have they plotted some plan (against you O Muhammad)? Then We too are planning (to destroy them).

Or do they think that We don’t hear their secrets and their private counsel? Of course Our Messengers (angels) are recording by them. [43:78-80]

Scholars have commented that these verses are related to the boycott that the Quraysh imposed on the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his family and Companions in Makkah.

In the seventh year after receiving the revelation, four events took place one after another. The Prophet’s (peace be upon him) uncle Hamza accepted Islam, followed after a couple of weeks by Umar, and then the Quraysh sent a delegation to Abyssinia to bring back the migrants. They didn’t like the bad publicity, however Najashi refused to send them back and protected them, which was a blow to the Quraysh. The fourth thing that took place was that the Quraysh tried to negotiate with the Prophet (peace be upon him), but he would not compromise his principles. When this failed, they decided to kill him.

The boycott of the Muslims

Even today it is sad that brothers will betray brothers and side with their adversary. At that time the Quraysh decided that they would boycott Bani Hashim, the Prophet (peace be upon him)’s tribe. No one could marry from them, or buy and sell to them, and no one could mix with them. Abu Lahab, the Prophet’s own uncle, sided with his enemies against him, and the believers were forced to live in a valley between two mountains (Shi’b Bani Hashim) for nearly three years, as noted by Ibn Hisham and other historians. How did they survive for three years under such conditions? Because there were still people of dignity, like the cousin of Khadija, Hakim bin Hizam, whose conscience would not allow Bani Hashim to die, so they would come during the night to drop off some food and water. But this was not enough for all of them, so they had to eat leaves of trees and skins of animals. They were starving and the children were crying. You could hear their cries in Makkah.

We are seeing in Gaza now that people are starving and children are crying out of hunger. Their cries are echoing around the world. However, while in Jahiliyya times there were people of conscience who supported them with food and whatever else they could, today, our world’s leaders have completely lost their humanity.

1.4 million people are under siege, being starved to death in Rafah, in addition to being bombed day and night and enduring unrelenting brutality.

Blood on their hands

If this was not dire enough, the borders are blocked by their brothers – Egypt and Jordan. Their brothers are contributing to their death.

What will they reply to Allah on the Day of Judgement? Why did they leave their brothers and sisters to die when they could have opened their borders and supported them with food and drink? What will they say to justify why they sided with the oppressors rather than the oppressed?

Children, women, and the elderly are dying. People are watching all this on their screens with horror. Yet governments are vetoing the ceasefire and giving the green light to a crime against humanity: genocide.

If you want to kill Hamas, are the children Hamas? Are the civilians Hamas? The massacre is taking place before our eyes and governments are doing nothing to stop it. We have plenty of Abu Lahabs right now. This has to stop.

More than a hundred thousand have been killed or injured and 2.3 million people are displaced. What are we waiting for? Netanyahu says he wants victory, what victory is he talking about?

There is a clear reason to assert this is a genocide, as South Africa has. After the Holocaust, it was said genocide should never occur again. Genocide should never occur again, a principle enshrined in the Geneva Conventions. It applies to all peoples and justice is for everyone, not for a few.

More violence is not the solution when violence has already failed

Peace is the solution. Not violence. Violence can never be the solution. There are some extreme ideas that are being inflicted on the Palestinians – that what you cannot achieve with violence, you can achieve with more violence. This is one hundred percent wrong. Violence only begets more violence. We have to deliver justice to the oppressed and end occupation.

After three years of blockade, in Muharram of the tenth year of Muhammad (peace be upon him)’s mission, the pact was broken. Hisham bin ‘Amr, who used to smuggle some food to Bani Hashim secretly at night, went to see Zuhair bin Abi Omaiyah Al-Makhzoumy and convinced him to act. They gathered five wise people together and went to the Quraysh to pressure them to end the siege.

After the siege ended by the will of Allah, the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his Companions became stronger, but it was a very difficult test. This is also a very difficult test for all of us. We cannot be spectators. We should do our best to reduce the harm and defend and side with the oppressed, not the oppressor. Even if we are not able to bring justice immediately, at least we will be able to say to Allah that we tried our best and our actions will be part of the momentum that will bring change one day.

We need wise leaders to come together like the five leaders of the Quraysh came together to put an end to this war and protect the innocent lives.

We ask Allah to bring an end to the atrocities, and the killing of the Palestinians and restore peace and justice to Palestine. Ameen.

Based on the khutbah of Shaykh Haytham Tamim 23rd Feb 2024.


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.