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ENJOINING GOOD AND FORBIDDING EVIL

ENJOINING GOOD AND FORBIDDING EVIL

Allaah, the Exalted, Says (what means):

“Let there arise out of you a group of people inviting to all that is good (Islam), enjoining Al-Ma`roof (i.e., Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do) and forbidding Al-Munkar (polytheism, disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden). And it is they who are the successful.”

(Quran 3:104)

“You are the best of peoples ever raised up for mankind; you enjoin Al-Ma`roof (i.e., Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam has ordained) and forbid Al-Munkar (polytheism, disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden)”.

(Quran 3:110)

“Show forgiveness, enjoin what is good, and turn away from the foolish (i.e., don’t punish them).”

(Quran 7:199)

“Those among the Children of Israel who disbelieved were cursed by the tongue of Daawood (David) and `Eesa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary). That was because they disobeyed (Allaah and the Messengers) and were ever transgressing beyond bounds. They used not to forbid one another from the Munkar (wrong, evildoing, sins, polytheism, disbelief) which they committed. Vile indeed was what they used to do”.

(Quran 5:78, 79)

“…We (i.e. Allaah Almighty) rescued those who forbade evil, and with a severe torment We seized those who did wrong because they used to rebel against Allaah’s Command (disobey Allaah).”

(Quran 7:165)

Abu Sa`eed Al-Khudri may Allaah be pleased with him reported: The Messenger of Allaah sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said:

“Whoever amongst you sees an evil, he must change it with his hand; if he is unable to do so, then with his tongue; and if he is yet unable to do so, then with his heart; and that is the weakest form of Faith”.

[Muslim]

This Hadeeth (narration) contains a very important prescription to prevent the Muslim society from all things which are forbidden in Islam. So long as Muslims adhered to it and ceaselessly and fearlessly performed their obligation of enjoining the right and forbidding the wrong, their society was largely safe from many evils and sins.

The Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said:

“Beware of sitting on roads (paths).”

The audience said

“We have them as sitting places.”

The Messenger sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said:

“If you have to sit there, then observe the rights of the way”.

They asked, “What are the rights of the way?”

He sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said:

“To lower your gaze (on seeing what is illegal to look at), removal of harmful objects from the way, returning greetings, and enjoining good and forbidding wrong”.

[Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]

This Hadeeth tells us that it is improper to sit on roadsides and passages in such a way, which causes inconvenience to the people who pass by. It is really very unfortunate that now we do not care about such things at all. If sitting on the roadside is indispensable, then it is essential to observe the requirements mentioned in the Hadeeth.

Some Islamic etiquette mentioned in this Hadeeth have also been stated in other Ahadeeth (pl. or Hadeeth). For instance, politeness of speech, sharing of someone’s burden, helping the oppressed and the troubled, guiding the wayward person to the right path, answering (in the prescribed manner) one who sneezes, etc.

`Abdullaah Ibn `Abbaas may Allaah be pleased with them reported: The Messenger of Allaah sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention) saw a man wearing a gold ring. So he (the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam (may Allaah exalt his mention )) pulled it off and threw it away, saying, “One of you takes a live coal, and puts it on his hand?!” It was said to the man after the Messenger sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) had left: “Take your ring (of gold) and utilize it,” whereupon he said: “No, by Allaah, I would never take it after the Messenger of Allaah sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) has thrown it away”. [Muslim]

We learn from this Hadeeth that wearing gold rings (and other golden ornaments) is prohibited for men. Unfortunately, it has become a popular fashion nowadays for men to wear gold rings to signify their marriage, which is a very dangerous custom that must be shunned.

Huthaifah may Allaah be pleased with him reported: The Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam ( may Allaah exalt his mention ) said,

“By Him in Whose Power my life is, you either enjoin good and forbid evil, or Allaah will certainly soon send His punishment to you. Then you will make supplication and it will not be accepted”.

[At-Tirmithi]

To abandon the practice of enjoining virtue and forbidding vice is likely to incur the displeasure of Allaah and the rejection of prayer