Growing beards and performing Salah with shoes on as a Sunnah of the Prophet

Q 3: The justification that is given for letting the beard grow and offering Salah (Prayer) in footwear, and other matters, is to be different from the Jews, Christians, and the Magi. So should we abandon rulings like these, if those people do these things?

A: The best conduct is that of Muhammad (peace be upon him) and one of the things that he did was to let his beard grow; he also ordered for this to be done. In doing this he (peace be upon him) was obeying Allah's Orders for him to follow the example of the previous Messengers, such as Harun (Aaron, peace be upon him and all the Messengers and prophets), as Harun used to have a beard. Allah (Exalted be He) says: They are those whom Allâh had guided. So follow their guidance. As for the justification that the Prophet (peace be upon him) mentioned, it was to show the Jews' disobedience to the prophets and Messengers before him, and he forbade imitation of them by ordering Muslims to behave contrary to them. This does not mean (Part No. 3; Page No. 432) that if the `Illah (effective cause) given for a ruling does not exist that the ruling should no longer be applied. By Muslims letting their beards grow, they were following the tradition of the Messengers and the Seal of the Messengers, Muhammad (peace be upon him), whom Allah sent to all human beings and the Jinn (creatures made from fire).As to performing Salah wearing footwear, they (the Jews) do not do this due to what Allah said to Musa (Moses): So take off your shoes; you are in the sacred valley, Tuwa. It has been established that the laws of the previous nations apply to us, unless they have been replaced or abrogated by our Shari`ah. In this case, this was abrogated by the Messenger (peace be upon him) offering Salah wearing shoes and permitting this if the shoes are Tahirah (ritually clean). If the Jews do not offer their prayers wearing footwear, they are contradicting the conduct of the Messenger (peace be upon him), and he was also their Messenger, as Allah (Exalted be He) says: And We have not sent you (O Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم) except as a giver of glad tidings and a warner to all mankind. However, if they do perform their prayers in footwear, they are following the tradition of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and we should not abandon his Sunnah (whatever is reported from the Prophet) if they apply one of the rulings that our Prophet (peace be upon him) stipulated for us.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions!