[Friday Sermon] The Importance Of Praying For Leaders In Islam By Imam Murtada Gusau
In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Bestower of mercy
All praises and thanks are due to Allah, the Most Gracious, Most Merciful, and Owner of the Day of Resurrection. All praise and thanks are due to Allah, Who created creation so that they worship Him. He made His Signs clear and plain to them, so that they know Him, and He made the path to Him easy, so that they reach Him.
I bear witness that none has the right to be worshipped except Allah Alone without partners. His is the kingdom and He is Worthy of all praise, and He is Able to do all things. I testify that our Prophet, Imam and example, Muhammad, is Allah’s slave and Messenger. Allah has sent Muhammad with the guidance and the religion of truth to be a Warner for mankind and the jinn. May Allah’s peace and blessings be on the Prophet and on his Progeny, Companions and those who followed him with excellence till the Last Day.
Dear Muslims! Fellow Nigerians!
Remember Allah always and praise Him in the morning and evening. Know, may Allah grant you His Mercy, that Zikr (Allah’s remembrance) is the best speech to Allah. Abu Dhar (R.A) narrated a Hadith in which he said that the Messenger of Allah said to Him:
“Should I tell you about the most beloved speech to Allah? The most beloved speech to Allah is Subhanallahi wa bi-Hamdihi. (I exalt Allah above all unsuitable things ascribed to Him, and all the praises are for Him).” (Muslim collected this Hadith)
Zikr (remembering Allah) brings life to the hearts, enlightens and purifies them and fills them with happiness. Therefore, remember Allah always, humble yourselves before Him and Invoke Him in Du’a (Supplication), for:“Du’a (invocation) is the Ibadah (worship),” where Ibadah pertains to acts of worship. Invoke Allah for all your needs, minor and major, the necessary ones and those you can wait to attain. Await Allah’s relief (and it will surely come) Allah said:
“Invoke your Lord with humility and in secret.” (Al-A’raaf, 7:55)
Know, dear Muslims, that when a Muslim says Du’a for the benefit of his brother or sister, he or she earns Allah’s rewards. Allah said:
“And those who came after them say: Our Lord! Forgive us and our brethren who have preceded us in Faith.” (Al-Hashr, 59:10)
Further, Abu Ad-Darda’ and Uwaimir bin Zaid (R.A) said that they heard the Messenger of Allah (SAW) say:
“Every Muslim slave (Servant of Allah) who invokes Allah for the benefit of his absent brother, then the angel will reply, ‘Amin’ and for you the same.” (This Hadith was collected by Muslim)
Abu Ad-Darda’ (R.A) also narrated that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) said:
“The invocation of Allah by a Muslim person for the benefit of his absent brother is accepted. There will be an angel right next to his head who is entrusted with the job of replying, ‘Amin, and for you the same,’ every time he invokes Allah for his brother to earn all that is good and righteous.” (Also, Muslim collected this Hadith)
It was reported that Abu Ad-Darda’ (R.A) used to invoke Allah for seventy of his companions by name when they were not present with him, thus testifying that his heart was pure towards his brethren.
Therefore, since invoking Allah for other Muslims carries a reward for the Muslim, then there is no doubt that invoking Allah for Leaders to lead people righteously and honestly carries greater reward and bounties from Allah. Also, invoking Allah for other people is a part of the sincere advice that Muslims must deliver to their brethren.
Tamim bin Aus Ad-Darri (R.A) narrated:
“The Prophet (SAW) said, ‘The religion is sincerity.’ We said ‘To whom?’ He said, ‘To Allah, His Book, and His Messenger and to Muslim Leaders and their common folk.”
My Respected people!
Invoking Allah for sincere Leaders becomes more important if they lead people righteously and honestly. Therefore, the believing slave should draw closer to Allah by invoking Him for Leaders, because when they are righteous, the Ummah (Nation) in general benefits from their righteousness, and the vice versa. We should warn against the practice of those who do not have knowledge and whose habit is to defame their sincere and righteous Leaders and curse them, thus earning sin because of their ill-mannerism. There is a big difference between advising, and cursing and defaming. Muslims should offer sincere advice to their leaders, but should refrain from cursing, attacking, shouting and stoning them for fear that this might shatter the unity of the Ummah, causing a larger evil than the one they seek to remove. This, if it happens, will only please the enemies of unity and progress and brings comfort and happiness to their hearts.
Know that when Leaders are righteous, the Muslim Nation will benefit as a whole.
Abu Umamah (R.A) narrated that the Prophet (SAW) said:
“Do not curse your leaders and invoke Allah to make them righteous, for their righteousness brings about your well-being as well.”
This Hadith asserts the requirement from Muslims to advise their leaders and invoke Allah to make them righteous, just and fair. Also, implementing this Hadith serves to unite the Ummah (Nation), just as the Prophet (SAW) commanded.
Umm Al-Husain Al-Ahmasiyyah (R.A) said that she heard the Messenger of Allah (SAW) say in a Khutbah he delivered at Arafat:
“Even if a slave is appointed your commander, leading you according to Allah’s Book, (or he is following the rule of law or respecting the law of the land) then hear him and obey.”
Abdullah, son of Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal commented:
“I heard my father say, ‘I believe that the Leader has the right on me that I hear and obey him in times of ease and times of hardship, whether I feel vitality or relaxation.” (Muslim, Ahmad and Ibn Majah collected this Hadith)
Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal, who is known as the Imam of the Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jamaa’ah, used to say:
“If I have an accepted supplication, I will invoke Allah on behalf of the Leader.”
This statement from Imam Ahmad indicates his knowledge and understanding in the religion. If the Leader is righteous and just, the entire country will benefit, righteousness will flourish, Allah’s blessing will descend on them, the righteous people will become dominant and the evil ones will be humiliated.
Fellow Muslims! Fellow Nigerians!
Invoking Allah for Just and sincere Leaders is a way of helping one another in righteousness and fear from Allah; it unites the word of the Ummah, brings their hearts together and makes their Leader feel kind towards his nation.
Imam Ahmad and Muslim narrated that ‘Auf bin Malik Al-Ashja’i said:
“I heard the messenger of Allah say, ‘The best of your leaders are those who you love and they love you, for whom you invoking Allah for mercy and blessings and they invoke Allah for you for mercy and blessings. The worst of your Leaders are those whom you hate and they hate you, whom you curse and they curse you.’ We asked, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! Should we fight them in the latter case?’ He said, ‘No, as long as they establish the prayer for you. Verily, if a commander is appointed over one of you and he witnessed his commander committing Allah’s disobedience, let him hate the disobedience of Allah that he is committing, but refrain from rising against him.”
My respected people!
Our leaders actually need supports and prayers from us in order to bring national development and the consolidation of democratic gains in the nation. This is the time of patience and sacrifice. Our economy was in danger. Only God through our prayers can take us out of these problems bedeviling our country. And our prayers and supports to the leaders will go a long way in bringing the solutions to all these challenges by God’s Grace. Allah makes this change a blessing and mercy to all of us.
My Respected people!
Fear Allah, support, respect and pray for your leaders. It actually baffles, surprises, and confuses me to see or hear a Muslim attacking, stoning, disrespecting, disobeying and shouting at his leader. Most of the times, I also used to ask myself that, should those kind Muslims really understand the teachings of their religion? Should these kind Muslims really receive good Islamic upbringing and training from their parents? Because all we knew was that, Islam ordered its followers to respect their leaders and pray for them, be they political leaders, “traditional” leaders, community leaders or Religious leaders. Therefore, with this, I urged all of us to fear Allah and follow the teachings of our religion in order for us to succeed here and the hereafter.
O Allah’s slaves! O Nigerians!
Fear Allah and feel His Watch as if He is right in front of your eyes. Invoke Allah to grant righteousness to us all, and our leaders, and to make our Leaders among those who fear Him, seek refuge with Him, follow His Commandments and seek His Pleasure.
“O you who believe! Keep your duty to Allah and fear Him, and speak (always) the truth. He will direct you to do righteous good deeds and will forgive you your sins. And whosoever obeys Allah and His messenger (SAW), he has indeed achieved a great achievement (i.e. he will be saved from the Hell-fire and will be admitted to Paradise.” (Al-Ahzaab, 33:70-71)
O Allah! Who created and brought the heavens and earth into existence, Who does not pass away or depart. He, Who knows all about our conditions and is fully aware of all our movements and period of rest, helps our President, Muhammadu Buhari to stop this Boko Haram People and all the Nigerians problems. Yaa Rahman Yaa Raheem!
O Allah! Who creates, sustains and controls the affairs within the universe. He Who protects and preserves us and controls our affairs, the Sole Creator, Sustainer and Brilliant Planner. We call on You to forgive us, have sympathy for us and give our president wisdom, power, knowledge and grace to stop and defeat the extremists (Boko Haram), a group which destroys, and does not build, corrupts much, and does not rectify, and all the related terror activities from this our beloved and great country, Nigeria. Yaa Rabb!
O Allah! Use him ( Muhammadu Buhari), his vice Osinbajo, Senate President Bukola Saraki, speaker House of Representatives Yakubu Dogara, our state Governors, our ministers and commissioners our local Government Chairmen, our Sultan, our Shehus, Obas and Emirs and all our other leaders to transform and salvage Nigeria, so that they lead us to all that is good for us and our country. Yaa Hayyu yaa Qayyum!
Our Lord! Let not their hearts deviate after You have guided them, grant them and us mercy from You, truly, You are the Bestower of Mercy.
O Allah! We are powerless, speechless and helpless, we pray through You to protect us and our leaders from fallen into mistakes and guides them O Allah, to all that which is good to all of us. Guide them, so that they will work for the unity, peace, progress and stability of Nigeria. Guide them also to provide quality and responsible leadership, and to bring Nigeria’s vast resources together to tackle a series of deep-seated, interconnected challenges and put the country on a road to better governance, increased security, and greater prosperity. Yaa Ar-hamar Raahimeen Yaa Rabbal Aalameen!
O Allah! Give them the zeal to overcome daunting and threatening challenges, instill in them Your fear, so that they will lead justly towards the development of our people and county.
O Allah! Protect us all and our country, bless this county, forgive and have mercy, and destroy whoever that has a bad intention against our leaders, against us and our great country, Nigeria. Just as you protected us before, we seek for more of such protection, Yaa Zal Jalaali wal Ikraam!
Our Lord! Accept (this prayer) from us. Indeed you are the Hearing, the knowing… Ameen.
With this I conclude my Sermon (Khutbah) and ask Allah (SWT) the Almighty, to forgive all of our sins. So seek His forgiveness, for He is the All-Forgiving, the All-Merciful.
Indeed all praise belongs to Allah, the Lord of all creation – and May peace and blessings of Allah be upon the beloved Prophet, his family, his Companions and those who follow him precisely until the Day of Judgment.
This Khutbah (Friday Sermon) was prepared for delivery today, Ramadan 2, 1436 A.H (June 19, 2015), by Imam Murtada Muhammad Gusau, the Chief Imam of Nagazi-Uvete Jumu’at Mosque Okene, Kogi State Nigeria. He can be reached for an advice or correction through 08038289761.