(alsalafyoon article)

Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu is one of the foremost believers who accepted Allah’s message which called people to Islam and to believe in His Messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. He was called al Siddiq, one who never failed to testify to the truth, because of his unquestionable faith in what Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam brought from Allah subhana wa ta’ala. He never had any doubt about the supreme authority of the One who revealed it. Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu was also called al ‘Atiq, the ancient, because he was one of the few believers who embraced Islam as soon as he heard about the divine message. He was granted true victory from the heavens. He was one of the best companions of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. He shared with Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam a magnificent friendship filled with love, compassion and sharing under all circumstances. Allahsubhana wa ta'ala chose him to be Rasulullah’s sallallahu alayhi wa sallam companion on the hijra from Makkah to Mad ina.

Finally, he was buried within the same chamber where Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam sallallahu alayhi wa sallam was laid to rest, in the area of peace and beauty of the Prophet’s Mosque, in the splendor of the garden of paradise which gleams with the everlasting lights of the message, the chosen Messenger and the Seal of Allah’s prophets, and the those of heavenly angels who continuously, up to the Day’s of Resurrection, will continue to descend upon his resting place.

Abu Bakr and this Life Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu used to easily and readily discard his fleeting interest in this world, and he solicited the everlasting delights of the Hereafter. It was as though he had divorced the world and was unyielding to its allurements. Imam Ahmad narrated that ‘Abdu Rahman bin ‘Awf said: “I visited Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu during the illness of which he died. I paid my regards of peace and I sat near him. Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu turned to me and said, ‘I saw the world (dunya) come before me and it knelt down, but it refrained from coming closer. Surely a day will come, when people will adorn themselves with silk and fineries, and they will condemn woolen garments. I swear to mighty Allah subhana wa ta'ala that it will be more advantageous for one to be unjustly beheaded than to wallow in the throes of this world.’” ‘Urwa bin Al-Zubair reported that ‘Aisha said: “I once wore a new robe and I kept on admiring it. Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu saw me and said: ‘What are you looking at? Do you not know that right now Allahsubhana wa ta'ala is not looking at you?’ I replied: ‘Why is that?’ Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu answered: ‘When a servant admires the glitters of the world, Allah subhana wa ta'ala Almighty detests him until the servant comes out of it.’ ‘Aisha immediately took off her new robe and gave it away in charity. When Abu Bakr learned about what his daughter did, he commented: ‘Perhaps this will be your atonement.’ Yahya bin Abi Kathir reported that sometimes during his Friday sermon, Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu used to say: “Where are the bright ones, the handsome looking ones, and where are those who took pride in their youthfulness, where have they gone? Where are the great kinds who built cities and castles and fortified them with towering walls? What happened to the lionhearted valorous ones who made their enemy suffer humiliation in the battlefields? Time waned under their feet and they ended inside dark graves. Think of it and take heed. They have gone far far away.’ Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu would then cry out perturbedly: ‘Help, help!’

Abu Bakr and his love for the Truth Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu was mostly sober and gracious. He struck a balance of the rightly guided ones, and he never went beyond his limits. He was serious in every endeavor in his pursuit to please Allah, the King of all Kings. Abi Salih reported that during the caliphate of Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu a delegation from Yemen arrived to Madina and when they heard a recitation from the Qur’an, they wept. Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu remarked: ‘We were like that in the beginning, but since then, our hearts have hardened.’ In this sense he meant that the companions’ faith helped their hearts grow stronger in the comfort of knowing Allah subhana wa ta'ala Almighty. Sa’id bin Omar narrated that Bilal al Habashi was under torture, and he was buried alive under heavy stones when Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu came and bought his freedom for five measures of gold. After accepting the deal, the Quraishi headman remarked to Abu Bakr. “I would have sold him to you even if you had insisted and bargained on a single measure of gold!” Abu Bakr replied: “Should you even had insisted on asking one hundred measures of gold for his freedom, I would have paid them.” ’Amru ibnu Dinar quoted from another sermon in which Abu Bakr said: “People! who exhort you to beware of the day when you become poor and needy, to gear your Lord, to Hail his holy name with praises that befit His majesty and glory, and to pray for forgiveness, for He is most forgiving.”

Abdullah bin Akim reported another segment of this sermon quoting Abu Bakr radi Allahu anhu to have said: “Ye people! You must know that when you serve Allah subhana wa ta'ala Almighty sincerely, you will have obeyed your Lord, as well as you will have protected your rights. Pay your alms taxes and when you woe before you are asked and pressured to do so, and on a day you have no means to do so. Pay them even in advance when you are comfortable, and make them work for you, those will be regarded as your superogatory offerings. Only if you do so, that you may receive a refund, and particularly when you are poor and need it most. O servants of Allah, think for a moment about your predecessors. Where were they yesterday, and where are they today! Where are the great kings who aroused the land and raised its cities? They are forgotten, and on no one remembers them. Today they are alike nothing. Now their dwellings are desolate ruins because of their sins. (27:52) laying dead in dark graves. Can yo u find a single one of them alive, or can you hear as much as a whisper from them? (19:98) O ye people, tell me, where are your other friends and brethren? They are now reaping the fruit of their earlier work in this world. Today, they are either happy or aggrieved. Allah subhana wa ta'ala does not have a kinship with anyone in His creation, and therefore, He does not grant anyone special status, favors or exemptions, except with regards to obeying His command and abstaining from what He forbids. In fact, there is no benefit in any so-called good deed that drives its author to hell-fire, and there is no evil deed after which repentance leads its author to hell-fire, and there is no evil deed after which repentance leads its author to paradise. Indeed, there is no benefit in any speech that does not solicit Allah’s acceptance, nor in a deed that is not done for His pleasure, and surely there is no benefit in a weath whch is not spent freely for Allah’s sake. In fact, one’s deeds are of no worth wha tsoever if his ignorance exceeds his forbearance. Surely there is no righteousness or virtue in one who disdains to speak the truth in fear of people’s criticism regarding Allah’s rights. Thus, I conclude my sermon, and I ask for Allah’s forgiveness for myself and for you.”

‘Abdu Rahman Ibn Abdullah Ibn Dabit narrated that during Anhu Nakr’s last illness, he called for Omar bin al Khattab and said: “Omar fear Allah subhana wa ta'ala and realize that He has enjoined upon us duties which we must fulfill during the day, and He will not accredit them if we fulfill them at night. He also enjoined upon us duties He decreed that we must fulfill them during the night, and therefore, he will not accept them should we comply with them during the daytime. In fact, Allah subhana wa ta'ala does not accept an extra deed unless one offers the obligatory ones first. In the Hereafter , the balance of people’s good deeds only tilt the balance in their favor because they had accepted and followed his command in this world, hence, their recognition of their Lord keeps them heedful during this life. If such truth is placed in the balance tomorrow, it will definitely weigh heavy in their favor. On the other hand, the good deeds of the unlucky ones are worthless and they will weigh nothing on the day of reckoning, and that is because they follow naught but conjecture and falsehood in this world. And therefore, it will be just and quotable for the balance on the day of judgment to compute their deeds as inconsequential. Whenever Allah subhana wa ta'ala mentioned the dwellers of paradise, he described them according to their good deeds, and He discounted their pitfalls. Whenever I remembered such verses in the Qur’an, I worried about myself should I not to be in their company. Moreover, whenever, Allah subhana wa ta'ala mentioned dwellers of hell-fire in the Qur’an, He described them by their evil deeds, and he refused to accept their good ones for they were not done for His sake, and hence, whenever I remembered such people, I always prayed not to be in their group. Thus, Allah’s servant must be constantly yearning and uneasy at the same time. He should not consider his devotion as valuable, nor should he despair of Allah’s favor and mercy. If you accept my admonition, then await the a rrival of no distant visitor more than you await the angel of death, and it will surely come. And should you not heed my admonition, then hate nothing more the sure arrival of a distant visitor more than the angel of death, and yet you cannot frustrate him.”



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