Q 1: "The perfect word" is as the Messenger of both mankind and jinn (creatures created from fire), tells us in his Hadith:
Whoever says: La ilaha illa Allah, i.e. there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, shall enter Paradise.
This perfect word consists of two parts: 'There is no deity'; a form of negation, and 'Except Allah', a form of affirmation. This indicates the Oneness of Allah, (Exalted be He). But where can I find the second part, which indicates the message of Muhammad (peace be upon him)? If the two parts are found in the Book of Allah and the Sunnah (whatever is reported from the Prophet, peace be upon him) where can I find them together?
The first pillar of Islam which includes both parts is frequently mentioned in the Glorious Qur'an. As for the first part, Allah (Exalted be He) says:
Allâh! Lâ ilâha illa Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He), Al-Hayyul-Qayyum (the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists).
(Part No. 1; Page No. 78) Allah also says:
So know (O Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم) that, Lâ ilâha illallâh (none has the right to be worshipped but Allâh).
And He also says:
Such is Allâh, your Lord! Lâ ilâha illa Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He), the Creator of all things.
As for the second part, Allah says:
Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) is the Messenger of Allâh. And those who are with him are severe against disbelievers, and merciful among themselves.
And He also says:
Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) is no more than a Messenger, and indeed (many) Messengers have passed away before him.
As for the Sunnah, it is related in the Two Sahih (authentic) Books of Hadith (i.e. Al-Bukhari and Muslim) on the authority of
Ibn `Umar (may Allah be pleased with them both) that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said:
Islam is based on five pillars: Testifying that La ilaha illa Allah (there is no god but Allah), performing Salah (prayers), giving Zakah (obligatory charity), performing Hajj (pilgrimage), and observing the Sawm (Fast) of Ramadan.
It is also related in Sahih
`Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) that he said:
While we were sitting with the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) one day, a man appeared before us in pure white clothes and his hair was extraordinarily black. There were no signs of travel on him and none of us recognized him. He sat with the Prophet (peace be upon him) and put his knees before the Prophet's knees and placed his palms on the Prophet's thighs and said: "O Muhammad, inform me about Al-Islam." The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: "Al-Islam is that you testify that there is none worthy of worship (in truth) but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, and you establish Salah, (Part No. 1; Page No. 79) pay Zakah, observe the Sawm of Ramadan, and perform Hajj if you can afford the journey." The inquirer said: "You have told the truth." `Umar ibn Al-Khattab said: "We were amazed that he would ask and then he would himself verify the truth." The inquirer then said: "Inform me about Iman (faith)." The Prophet replied: "Faith is to affirm your belief in Allah, His angels, His Books, His Prophets, the Day of Judgment, and the Divine Decree its good and evil." The inquirer said: "You have told the truth." The inquirer again said: "Inform me about Al-Ihsan (perfection of deeds)." The Prophet said: "That you worship Allah as if you are seeing Him, for though you don't see Him, verily, He sees you." The enquirer said: "Inform me about the Hour (of Doom)." The Prophet remarked: "The one who is asked about it knows no more than the questioner." The inquirer said: "Tell me about its signs." The Prophet said: "That the slave-girl will give birth to her mistress and master, that you will find barefooted, destitute goat-herds competing with one another in the construction of high buildings." The narrator said: "Then, the inquirer went on his way but I stayed with the Prophet for a long while. He then said to me: "O
`Umar, do you know who the inquirer was?" I replied: "Allah and His Prophet know best." The Prophet remarked: "He was Jibril (Gabriel), he came in order to instruct you in the matters of your religion."
It is related in the Two Sahih Books of Hadith from
`Ubadah Ibn Al-Samit (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Messenger (peace be upon him) said:
He who testifies that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah Alone Who has no partners and that Muhammad is His Servant and Messenger and that `Isa (Jesus) is Allah's Servant, Messenger, and that He bestowed him on
Maryam (Mary), a Spirit created by Him, and that Paradise is a fact and Hellfire is a fact, Allah will admit him into Jannah (Paradise) regardless of the deeds he has committed."
It is related in Sahih Al-Bukhari from
Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) who narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said:
I have been commanded to fight people until they say: ‘None has the right to be worshipped but Allah.’ If they say so, perform Salah as we do, face our Qiblah (Ka`bah-direction faced in Prayer), and slaughter (Part No. 1; Page No. 80) in the name of Allah, as we slaughter, then their blood and property will be inviolable to us and we will not interfere with them except legally and their reckoning will be with Allah.
It is related in the Two Sahih Books of Hadith on the authority of
`Itban (may Allah be pleased with him) who ascribed it to the Prophet:
Allah has forbidden Hellfire for those who say, "None has the right to be worshipped but Allah" only for the sake of Allah.
Scholars have explained these Hadiths and the like reports to mean: Whoever utters these two testimonies of faith and commits themselves to fulfill their due rights such as; observing the acts of `Ibadah (worship), abstaining from the unlawful, and devoting themselves to Allah alone, Allah will admit them into Paradise. As for someone who dies while committing sins other than disbelief and does not repent, they are submitted to the Will of Allah. If He wills, He will forgive and admit them into Paradise regardless of how little deeds they present. Likewise, if Allah wills, He will torture them in retribution for sins, then He may admit them to Paradise. There are so many accounts reported in this regard from the Prophet (peace be upon him). Ayahs (Qur'anic verses) explain each other and likewise the accounts of Sunnah. Allah (Exalted be He) says:
Verily, Allâh forgives not that partners should be set up with Him (in worship), but He forgives except that (anything else) to whom He wills
This Ayah (Qur'anic verse) is confined to those who do not repent of their acts of disbelief.As for Allah's saying:
Say: “O ‘Ibâdî (My slaves) who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allâh: verily, Allâh forgives all sins.
, it was revealed in reference to those who repent. This is according to the consensus of opinions of Muslim scholars. This is also the opinion of
Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal-Jama`ah (adherents to the Sunnah and the Muslim mainstream) amongst the Sahabah (Part No. 1; Page No. 81) (Companions of the Prophet) and those who followed their path such as the four Imams of the schools of law and their followers.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.