Advice from Abu Bakr (ra)

‘Abdullah ibn Hakeem reported that Abu Bakr radiyallaahu `anhu delivered the following sermon:

“To proceed, I indeed advice both myself and you to fear Allah, to praise Him as he deserves to be praised, to combine hope and fear, and to unite persistency with supplication (and prayer). For indeed, Allah praised Zakariyyah and the members of his household by saying:

Verily, they used to hasten on to do good deeds, and they used to call on Us with hope and fear, and used to humble themselves before Us.” (Qur’an 21:90)

And know, O slaves of Allah….that Allaah has taken covenants from you, and that He has purchased (from you) that which is little and fleeting for that which is plentiful and everlasting. Here among you is the Book of Allah, whose wonders never run out, and whose light never extinguishes. Believe in Allah’s speech, be sincere to His Book, and seek light from it for the Day of Darkness. Indeed, you have been created only to worship (Allah). And Allah has entrusted you to noble scribes [the blessed angels who record our deeds] who know what you do. Also know, O slaves of Allah, you come and go (on this earth) for an appointed time, and when it is that your time will come you do not know. If your are able to coincide your appointed time with a deed that you are performing for the sake of Allah, then do so. But you will not be able to do so except with Allah’s help…There are people who spent their lives for others, all the while forgetting themselves (i.e. their duties towards their Lord); I forbid you from becoming like them. So hasten, hasten (to perform good deeds), and then there will be salvation, salvation! Verily, you are being pursued from behind by that which travels with greet speed (ie, the time of your life).”

According to another account, Abu Bakr radiyallaahu `anhu also said,

“Where are the brothers you once knew? Where are the companions you once knew? They have reached where they were meant to go, having been met by the deeds they performed in their days gone by. They reside there (in the Hereafter) either in misery or happiness. Where are the arrogant tyrants who built the townships and encircled them with walls? They are now underneath stones and wells. Where are those whos faces were beautiful and full of light, those who were impressed by their youth? Where are the kings? Where are those who were granted victory on the fields of war? Time has caused them to decay, and they are now in the darkness of their graves. There is no goodness in saying that which is not spoken for the countenance of Allah, There is no goodness in wealth that is not spent in the path of Allah. There is no goodness in a person whose ignorance has overcome his forbearance. And there is no goodness in a person who, when it comes to doing something for the sake of Allah, fears the blame of a blamer. Between Allah and any person there is no familial relation, and so none can hope to receive anything from Him through such a relationship ( i.e. since no one is related to Allah, none can hope for the kind of help they receive from relatives on this earth based on family loyalty and love), nor can one hope that Allah will save him from evil (based on the same reason.) He gives goodness and saves from evil only through obedience to Him and the following of His commands. there is no such thing as something that is good if it leads to the Hellfire, and there is no such thing as something that is evil if it leads to Paradise…Because you are needy and poor (to Allah), I advice you to fear Allah, to praise Him as He deserves to be praised – and to ask for His forgiveness; for indeed, He is oft-forgiving. I have said what I needed to say, and I ask Allah for forgiveness, for both myself and you.”

“There are five dark matters and five lamps (to illuminate them (or in some cases, to counteract them)). Love of this world is darkness, and At-Taqwa (piety, righteousness, the fear of Allaah) is its lamp. Sin is darkness, and its lamp is repentance. The grave is darkness, and its lamp is (the phrase) ‘None has the right to be worshipped but Allah, and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.’ The Hereafter is darkness and its lamp is the good deed. The Siraat (the bridge over Hellfire that every person will have to cross in the Hereafter) is darkness, and its lamp is certainty of Faith.

Ausat ibn Ismaa’eel (may Allah have mercy on him) reported that, one year after the Prophet’s Death, he heard Abu Bakr radiyallaahu `anhu deliver the following sermon:

“The messenger of Allah stood among us the previous year just as I am standing here before you today.”

Abu Bakr radiyallaahu `anhu then began to cry; according to one account, he cried so uncontrollably that he was not able to speak for a while. Finally, after a long pause, Abu Bakr radiyallaahu `anhu continued,

“O people, ask Allah for well-being (physical, but especially spiritual well-being; and also, well-being in the hereafter), for with the exception of certainty of Faith, there is nothing better that He gives to anyone than well-being. Always be truthful for truthfulness is the companion of piety – and both of them are in Paradise. And beware of lying, for it is indeed the companion of wickedness, and both of them are in the Hellfire. Do not break off ties of family relationships; do not plot against one another; do not despise one another; do not be jealous of one another – but instead be slaves of Allah, brothers unto one another.

Az-Zubair ibn Al-‘Awwaam radiyallaahu `anhu reported that Abu Bakr radiyallaahu `anhu said during one of his sermons,

“O group of Muslims, be shy of Allah (the Possessor of Might and Majesty), for by the one Who has my soul in His Hand, I seek cover when I go out to relieve myself in the wide-open desert by using my robe as a veil. I do so out of shyness to Allah, the Possessor of Might and Majesty.”


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