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4.     Reforming and purifying people’s souls

Allah (swt) is Most Merciful to His slaves. Part of that mercy is His reviving their souls through His revelation and illuminating them with His light:” And thus We have sent to you (O’ Muhammad) a revelation of our command. You knew not what is that Book, nor what is Faith? But We have made it (this Qur’an) a light wherewith We guide whosoever or Our slaves We will…” (Qur’an 42: 52)

 

Through this divine revelation, Allah brings people forth from darkness into light, from the darkness of kufr (disbelief), shirk (polytheism) and ignorance into the light of Islam and truth. Allah (swt) said:” Allah is the Wali (Protector or Guardian) of those who believe. He brings them out from darkness into light.” (Qur’an 2: 257)

Allah sent His Messengers with His guidance to bring forth the people from darkness into light. Allah (swt) said:” And indeed We sent Musa (Moses) with Our ayaat (signs, proofs, and evidences) saying:’ Bring out your people from darkness into light’” (Qur’an 14: 5)

 

Without this light hearts become blind. Allah (swt) said:” Verily, it is not the eyes that grow blind, but it is the hearts which are in the breasts that grow blind.” (Qur’an 22: 46)

 

Their blindness means their going astray from the truth, their forsaking that which will benefit them and their turning to that which will harm them. Allah (swt) said:” And they (disbelievers, polytheists) worship besides Allah, that which can neither profit them nor harm them.” (Qur’an 25: 55)

 

The Messenger’s bringing forth people from darkness to light can only be achieved by teaching them the guidance of their Lord, and purifying their souls by teaching them about their Lord and His names and attributes, and teaching them about His angles, His Books and His Messengers, and teaching them about what will benefit them and what will harm them, and showing them the path which will lead to His love, and teaching them how to worship Him.

 

Allah said (swt):” He it is Who sent among the unlettered ones a Messenger (Muhammad) from among themselves, reciting to them His verses, purifying them (from the filth of disbelief and polytheism), and teaching them the Book (this Qur’an) and Al-Hikmah (Al-Sunnah). And verily, they had been before in manifests error.” (Qur’an 62: 2)

 

5.     Correcting deviant ideas and spurious beliefs

 

In the beginning, people were of sound nature, worshipping Allah alone and not associating anyone with Him.

 

But when they split up and became different from one another, Allah sent the Messengers to bring people back to the right path and to rescue them from misguidance. Allah (swt) said:” Mankind were one community and Allah sent Prophets with glad tidings and warnings.” (Qur’an 2: 213)

 

Mankind was one community, united in Tauheed, faith and worship Allah, then they differed, and Allah sent the Prophets to bring glad tidings and warnings.Each Messenger called his people to the straight path; he explained it to them and called them to follow it. This is something which all the Messengers had in common. And every Messenger corrected the deviation that was occurring in his time and in his land. There is no limit to deviation from the straight path, for it takes many forms.

 

Each Messenger stove to correct the deviation that existed at his time. Prophet Noah (Nuh) denounced his people for worshipping idols, as did Prophet Ibrahim (as); Prophet Hud (as) denounced his people for their arrogance and tyranny in the land; Prophet Saleh (as) denounced them for their corruption in the land and for their following the corrupt; Prophet Lut (as) fought against the sin of sodomy which was widespread among his people; Prophet Shu’aib (as) fought against his people’s practice of cheating in weights and measures, and so on.

 

All of these sins and others which the nations committed go beyond the limits of the straight path and are a deviation from it. The Messengers explained this path and fought against deviation from it in any way.

 

(to be continued)

 

(Prepared by Umar S. Al-Ashqar)