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Posted 10 September 2008 - 12:45 AM

Dear brothers and sisters, we have started reciting the stories of prophets sequentially, staring from before Adam’s (PBUH) creation. (The Series of The Beginning of Creation). After Adam (PBUH), we talked about prophets Idris (Enoch), Nuh (Noah), Hud, Saleh, Ibrahim (Abraham), Isma’il (Ishmael), Ishaq (Isaac), Yaqub (Jacob), and Yusuf (Joseph), (peace be upon them all). We will continue, by telling the story of prophet Dawud (David) (Peace be upon him).

Some tyrants ruled over the blessed land (Palestine), after the death of Prophet Musa (Moses) (PBUH). This happened as believers turned into a lost generation, who cared only for their own worldly affairs and good, without caring to stand up for Allah's (SWT) religion.

Allah (SWT)says what can be translated as, “Have you not thought about the group of the Children of israel after (the time of) Musa? When they said to a Prophet of theirs, “Appoint for us a king and we will fight in Allâh’s Way” (TMQ, 2:246) (1). The mission of the prophets of the People of israel was only to preach and guide people. They were not to lead fights with the exception of our prophet Muhammad (PBUH), who was the only one to perform all tasks by himself. “He said, “Would you then refrain from fighting, if fighting was prescribed for you?” (TMQ, 2:246).

Allah (SWT) addresses the People of israel saying that they are only people of slogans, and are not true believers, while true believers can only liberate that land. “They said, “Why should we not fight in Allah’s Way while we have been driven out of our homes and our children (families have been taken as captives)?” (TMQ, 2:246). Note we see this same thing nowadays by many recklessly enthusiastic youth, who do not even perform al fajr prayer (the dawn’s prayer). We are in dire need of long faith training.

“But when fighting was ordered for them, they turned away, all except a few of them. And Allah is All-Aware of the Zalimun (polytheists and wrong-doers).” (TMQ, 2:246). They originally numbered thousands, but they had been reduced to a few thousand.

“And their Prophet (Samuel) said to them, “Indeed Allah has appointed Talut (Saul) as a king over you.” They said, “How can he be a king over us when we are fitter than him for the kingdom, and he has not been given enough wealth.” He said: “Verily, Allah has chosen him above you and has increased him abundantly in knowledge and stature. And Allah grants His kingdom to whom He wills. And Allah is All Sufficient for His creatures’ needs, All-Knower” (TMQ, 2:247).

“Then when Talut set out with the army, he said: “Verily! Allah will try you by a river. So whoever drinks thereof, he is not of me, and whoever tastes it not, he is of me, except him who takes (thereof) in the hollow of his hand.” (TMQ, 2:249). This was a test for their will. And notice this stream might be represented nowadays by dissolute pictures or inappropriate shows on TV. You have to fight yourself first before fighting your enemies. “Yet, they drank thereof, all, except a few of them.” (TMQ, 2:249). And that was the third time. “So when he had crossed it (the river), he and those who believed with him, they said: “We have no power this day against Jalut (Goliath) and his hosts.” (TMQ, 2:249).

“They turned away, all except a few of them.” (TMQ, 2:246). They started with thirty thousand fighters, but they ended up with 313, the same number of Prophet Muhammad's (PBUH) companions in the battle of Badr, those men who have made history and changed the fate of earth.

“But those who knew with certainty that they were going to meet Allah, said: “How often a small group overcame a mighty host by Allah’s Leave?” And Allah is with As-Sabirun (the patient). And when they advanced to meet Jalut and his forces, they invoked: “Our Lord! Pour forth on us patience, and set firm our feet and make us victorious over the disbelieving people. So they routed them by Allah’s Leave and Dawud killed Jalut” (TMQ, 2:249-251).

Well, is this the story of Dawud (PBUH) or Talut? It is Dawud’s (PBUH) story. Although the main story is Talut’s, Dawud’s (PBUH) story starts from this point. An eighteen-year-old shepherd, Dawud (PBUH) was one of Talut's soldiers in this battle. He was not a man of slogans; he stood firm and loyal, until Allah (SWT) chose him to bring victory to His religion. This shows that if you are an honest believer, Allah (SWT) will help you succeed, even if no one else believes in you.

Dawud (PBUH) then became the great prophet, with whom the mountains and birds would praise Allah (SWT) and eulogize. Allah (SWT) says what can be translated as, “Allah gave him the kingdom [after the death of Talut and Samuel] and Al-Hikmah (Prophethood), and taught him of that which He willed.” (TMQ, 2:251). We find that Jerusalem (the al-Aqsa Masjid in Palestine) which was built by Adam (PBUH) forty years after building the K’aba in Makkah, as mentioned in Bukhari's book for Prophet Muhammad's (PBUH) authentic Ahadith, sank in Nuh’s (PBUH) flood. The prophets succeeded each other in the following order: Ibrahim (Abraham) (many centuries separate him and Nuh), Isma’il, Ishaq, Yaqub and his sons, Musa and Harun (Aaron), and then the prophets who followed them and preceded Dawud (peace be upon them all). Dawud (PBUH) wanted to reconstruct Jerusalem which should be controlled by believers at all times. And in this day, believers are the followers of prophet Muhammad (PBUH), the last of prophets.

Allah (SWT) said to Dawud (PBUH), “Dawud, I have a great Masjid in this place, and as you are now constructing the earth, reconstruct my great Masjid.” Allah (SWT) located for him the place, which was the house of one of the Jews who was one of Talut’s triumphant soldiers, but whose faith started to get weak. Dawud (PBUH) told the man, “Allah ordered me to construct a great Masjid on this land, and I want to buy this house from you so I can construct the Masjid.” The man replied, “O prophet of Allah! Price the house”, Dawud (PBUH) said, “No, you price it”. The Jew said, “The price I set for it is that you fill it with sheep for me”. Dawud (PBUH) agreed, because as a prophet, he wanted to obey Allah (SWT) and had to do what it takes. When the Jew saw that Dawud (PBUH) bought the house without argument, he said “O prophet of Allah! For the sake of Allah, tell me which is better for Allah, is it the Masjid or my house?” Dawud (PBUH) said, “the Masjid”, so the Jew said, “Then let me refrain from our selling agreement”. Dawud (PBUH) agreed, and so the previous conversation between them was repeated. Yet, this time the man asked Dawud (PBUH) to fill his house with camels, because they are more expensive than sheep. When Dawud (PBUH) agreed again, the man repeated the same thing and started anew, asking Dawud (PBUH) to fill his house this time with horses. At this point, Dawud (PBUH) found that it was an endless situation, at which point he told the man, “I swear by Allah that if you asked for my whole reign so that I would be able to build Allah's Masjid, I would give it all to you”. The man replied, “I swear to Allah, if I could rule as a king, I would take all of your powers.” Look at the nature of these Jews who claimed that Jerusalem belongs to them? It is even said that Dawud's (PBUH) wealth had all been spent as the construction of the Masjid was finished. It was completed at the time of Solaiman (Solomon) (PBUH).

Dawud (PBUH) was the first prophet of the People of israel who was also a king. In this story, a great meaning is highlighted, as Dawud (PBUH) was one of the few prophets who began as loyal fighters for the sake of Allah (SWT). Allah (SWT) then chose him, granted him the prophecy, and gave him power and wisdom. This shows that there are many people who are loyal to Allah (SWT), worshipping Him honestly, and are rewarded as Allah (SWT) grants them His blessings and goodness far beyond their imagination. Allah (SWT) set them to perform great deeds that no one would ever think they could do. There is something else to be taken here. While you might think that your capabilities and potentials are weak and limited, and that you can do little to help Islam, when you dedicate yourself faithfully to Allah (SWT), He enables you to achieve amazing things achieved only by great and innovative people. For example, a young person might be unable to recite the Holy Qur’an properly (tajweed), and it might be the first time for him to attend a religious lecture, but through his honesty and diligence, he can be a great supporter for Islam. Don’t underestimate yourself and your capabilities. Just depend on Allah (SWT), communicate with Him, learn and work harder, then you will find Allah (SWT) raising your capabilities and effectiveness.

I would like to highlight some other point: some people attend religious lectures, sitting beside each other, and listening to the same words; yet, there is a very big difference between them, why? One of them comes and his intention is only to satisfy Allah (SWT), while the other comes only to watch. It might be the first time for one to attend, yet, he is more aware and derives more benefit than someone else who has been attending lectures for years where this has just been a routine. You must set your intention faithfully to Allah (SWT) and continue to renew it.

When we talk about prophet Dawud (PBUH), we must talk about the great worship that he performed. He enjoyed worshipping Allah (SWT). You should measure how far you are from this level of worship. When you hear about and see the way he loved to worship Allah (SWT), an important question poses itself: why are we so far away from Allah (SWT)? Do we perform Qiyam prayer (night prayer)? You may find some people who do not even know what Qiyam is. For clarification, the worship of the Qiyam applies to any worship performed after the prayer of al- ishaa (the prayer of night) until al- fajr (the prayer of sunrise). Allah (SWT) favors worshipping in the last third of the night, before al –fajr by two and half or three hours, when Allah (SWT) descends to the first heaven, in a way that suits His glory, and says, “Is there anyone asking for My forgiveness so that I would forgive him? Is there anyone in need for anything so that I would give it to him? Is there anyone repenting so that I would accept his repentance?” (Hadith Qudsi)

How many people today perform this Qiyam worship, whether by waking up at late at night or by performing a short prayer? Or has this kind of worship vanished?

Who maintains Prophet Muhammad's (PBUH) Sunnah, the morning and evening eulogy (adhkar), gives alms daily, or keeps praising Allah (SWT) on a daily basis even for five or ten minutes? Frankly speaking, I feel as if we need someone to push us to worship, because we lack enthusiasm and willingness. Is there anybody who maintains fasting every Monday and Thursday? Do you remember when was the last time it was that you cried from fear of Allah (SWT)? Or when was your last humble prostration? When was the last time you enjoyed the taste of faith and humbleness while praying before Allah (SWT), and you wished it would never end? When was the last time you prayed in a group of Muslims, and prayed to Allah (SWT) to help you keep the level of faith that you had during this prayer? In short, when was the last time you felt close to Allah (SWT) and sensed the great pleasure of being humble to Him?

This introduction helps because when reading about the worship of Dawud (PBUH), we will all weep where we are today. When I was preparing this lecture, I felt sorry for my delinquency compared to Dawud's (PBUH) amazing worship.

Prophet Mohamed (PBUH) used to say while prostrating, “my hearing, my sight, my brain, my bones and my nerves are all humble to You”. The Prophet's (PBUH) companions (Sahaba) said, “When the Prophet read the Holy Qur’an, we used to hear his voice crying as if a boiler was humming. One could hear his heart beats as he shook, being so much affected by the holy verses.” The humming of a boiler is like water boiling in a pot

The Prophet's companion Anas Ibn-Malek said, “One day I prayed behind Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), and as I entered the Masjid at night, and saw a column that wasn’t there before. I wondered where this came from, so I got closer and found out it was the Prophet (PBUH)”. The Prophet (PBUH) stood so straight and steady, that Anas thought he was a trunk. “I thought this was my chance to pray behind him. He began reciting Surat Al-Baqarah (the Cow chapter). I said to myself surely he’ll prostrate after finishing one hundred verses, but he finished the whole surah. He then began reciting Surat An-Nisa (the Women chapter), and I thought surely he’ll prostrate after finishing one hundred verses, but he finished reading all of it. He followed this by reciting Surat Al-‘Imran (the Family of Imran chapter), and again, I thought surely he’ll prostrate after finishing one hundred verses, but, he finished it all. While reciting, when he would read a verse reminding of Hellfire, he (PBUH) would say, ' O My Lord! I seek your protection from Hellfire’. And when he came to a verse reminding of the mercy of Allah, I heard him saying, 'O My Lord! I ask for Your forgiveness and Your mercy'. And when he read a verse reminding of the gifts and graces of Allah he said, 'Thanks be to You, Allah'“.

Can you imagine this level at which our Prophet (PBUH) worshipped Allah (SWT)! What about us nowadays? We are now so busy with our lives. Months and years just pass, while we fail to maintain Sunnah, or Qiyam. We rarely keep praising Allah (SWT), and we do not read the Holy Qur’an except in Ramadan (the month of fasting). Until when will we stay like this?

I remember the words of the Sheikh Ibn-Tymeiah: “There is a paradise in life; those who cannot get an entrance to it, have no entrance to Paradise in the Hereafter”. When he was asked, “What Paradise is this?” he replied, “Praising Allah and being close to Him”.

The worship of prophet Dawud (PBUH) reminded me of all those meanings, and also made me wonder sadly how many times we pray in the Masjid? Do we pray all of our prayers, or do we even pray three or four of them at the Masjid? And when was the last time your heart was attached to Allah (SWT) and soaring high with pleasure? One of the companions' followers said, “Sometimes I think that if people in Paradise can feel the pleasure and sweetness I feel now, being close to Allah, it would be more than enough to satisfy them”

One of my friends once told me, “When I was in college, my worship was great and I was so close to Allah (SWT), I was humble in front of Him and my heart was so gentle. But when I graduated and got married, I became busy with my life and my children, and so my worship became routine. One night, I had a vision, and I saw a man saying to me, “Do you still remember the sweetness of the faith you tasted before?” I said, “Yes, I do”. The man asked me, “Do you want to feel that again?” I said, “Yes”. He then opened my heart and put something in it, then he closed it again” My friend said that while he was sleeping he felt the pleasure and sweetness he used to feel when he was eighteen years old, when he maintained praying in the Masjid and praying al Qiyam with humbleness.

Now dear brother, how many times have you recited the Holy Qur’an and found yourself unable to stop, enjoying it while your body is shaking, sweetly reacting the verses down to the deep contemplation of the meanings? I am trying to give a boost to the youth who are new to piety. If you do not taste this great pleasure now, when will you do this?

Beginnings always carry a unique sweetness, which cannot be regained later in the same initial level. The first year in worshipping and piety pushes you with power for the rest of your life, until you die. From my personal experience, I have been pious for many years, but I can’t regain the feelings I had in the first two weeks. The first year in worshipping pushes you forward, until death, making you feel that you own the whole world in your hands, although you may have no financial capabilities. Yet, you have begun to know the right path of guidance, which you will follow in your life and afterlife.

A delegation from Yemen came to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), and when they heard the Holy Qur’an, they cried. Abu-Bakr said, “We used to cry in the same way before our hearts got hard “, and he cried, himself, although he was the most tenderhearted and he had the strongest faith following the prophets.

Abu-Sa’id Al-Khodary said, “I went to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and said, “O Messenger of Allah! I had a strange vision. I saw myself praying behind a tree and reciting the Holy Qur’an and the tree stood humbly as I prayed, until I read a verse with a prostration place. I prostrated and saw the tree prostrating as I did. I heard it saying, ‘O Allah! Reward me for it, and eliminate a sin by it. Keep it as a support for me, and accept it from me as You accepted it from Your slave Dawud (PBUH).’”

Imagine that even the tree at the time of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) knew prophet Dawud (PBUH). Even objects could be humble for Allah (SWT), and asks Him to accept its prostration as He accepted Dawud's (PBUH). This proves the greatness of his prostration, the greatness reported even by trees until the age of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Do you see the difference between the visions of the Prophet's companions and our desire related dreams nowadays? Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) says, “The most honest one sees the most honest vision.”

Scholars say, “Lucky is he who has one right and honest prostration for the sake of Allah”. When will we get to this level? When can you prostrate and feel that your heart belongs no longer to this life, but to Allah (SWT)? When can you feel nothing around, fearing no one when crying or prostrating for a long time? It is really strange that the tree mentioned the prostration of Dawud (PBUH) specifically, although all prophets prostrated to Allah (SWT). It seems that Dawud's (PBUH) prostration was honest and loyal to an extent beyond imagination. You would be lucky if you could prostrate like Dawud (PBUH) did.

Ibn- Al-Qayem said, “Even If people get satisfied with life only, you should try to get satisfied with only Allah. Even if people are consumed by life, you try to be consumed with Allah. And even if people only get close to people who have connections and can help them only in life, you should try to get close to Allah”

I hope you can taste the real meaning of these words and not just consider it talk.

Abu-Mussa Al-Asha’ary recounted that one night he was sitting at the Prophet’s (PBUH) mosque, reciting the Holy Qur’an with a very sweet voice. He had the sweetest voice among the Prophet's companions, and he recited the Holy Qur’an while contemplating its meanings. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) entered and said, “I have heard your reciting the Holy Qur’an. You have got one of Dawud's flutes”. The flute is a musical instrument, for Dawud (PBUH) had a sweet voice. When he recited the Psalms (the Holy Book he had from Allah), he greatly affected the whole universe with his voice. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) meant that Abu-Mussa's vocal cord resembled Dawud's (PBUH). Imagine then how he recited Qur’an! Have you ever read the Holy Qur’an with that passion, even if your voice is not as sweet?

Abdullah Ibn-Amr Ibnul-Aass said, “I once met Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), and he told me, 'O Abdullah! I have heard that you fast and recite the Holy Qur’an every night'“. At that time, the Holy Qur’an was not yet completely revealed, and Abdullah was twenty-two. The Prophet's word “I have heard,” means that he did this frequently, until it was known and was reported to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

Of course Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) would set the right model for him, but still his enthusiasm, energy and willingness were so high. . Why can’t we do even a little part of what he did? If someone wants to pray at night (Qiyam prayer), Satan get in the way, with thoughts related to laziness, “I will pray after dinner, no let it be after watching T.V…. etc”. I mean that whenever you want to do something to get closer to Allah (SWT), Satan tries to take you away from the right path. Why would you let him defeat you and take you away from praising Allah (SWT) and praying?

Returning to the previous Hadith, Abdullah Ibn-Amr said to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), “Yes, messenger of Allah, I do”. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “Don’t do that, but fast then eat, and pray then sleep”. Look at the balance that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) preached. The goal was to create balanced Muslims. He told him to take it easy, but we are actually so far away from that point of balance, and we need to exert more efforts to get to it. As for reading the Holy Qur’an, the Prophet (PBUH) told him to finish it in thirty days, but he said that he could finish it in less days. The Prophet (PBUH) said, “So finish it in twenty”, to which Abdullah replied, “I can finish in less time than that “. When the Prophet (PBUH) told him to finish it in fifteen days, Abdullah said, “Let me enjoy my days of youth and recite the Holy Qur’an”, (nowadays enjoying youth means having affairs with girls). The Prophet (PBUH) replied, “Finish it in ten days”, he said, “I can finish in less time than this “, and the Prophet (PBUH) said “So finish it in five or three but not less than that”. With regard to fasting, the Prophet (PBUH) said to Abdullah, “If you fast three days each month, that will be as if you’ve fasted your whole life, because Allah’s (SWT) reward is multiplied by ten”. Look at how the Prophet (PBUH) simplifies matters. Abdullah said, “I am capable of more “, so the Prophet (PBUH) said, “Fast for a day and break fast for two days”(meaning fasting Monday and Thursday).” Abdullah still said, “I am capable of more “, so the Prophet (PBUH) said, “Fast every other day. This is Dawud’s way of fasting, which is the best way”. Abdullah said, “I am capable of more “, to which the Prophet (PBUH) said, “There is nothing better than this, Abdullah”. (Hadith Sahih, Narrated by Muslim, Al-Masnad al-Sahih, 1162).

There might be some youth that are very enthusiastic in worshipping Allah (SWT), yet they become busy after marriage and after having children. One of the companions’ followers once said, “I am afraid not to be rewarded for my worship”, so people asked him “why wouldn’t you be rewarded?”, and he said, “Because I enjoy it and I am not working harder at it”. Certainly, this is a high level of piety. Another follower once said, “I have been tired for a year from Qiyam prayers, but I have enjoyed it for twenty years”.

At the end of the conversation between Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and Abdullah Ibn-Amr, the Prophet (PBUH) told him, “Abdullah, someday you will be older and you will not be able to do what you are doing now”. Later in life, Abdullah said, “ I am now old and I can’t do what I used to do when I was young. I wish I had done what the Prophet (PBUH) told me to do”.

Balance is required in worship, but at the same time negligence is forbidden. Each worship has a taste and a pleasure felt in the heart, that’s why Allah (SWT) commanded us to perform it. Is it possible that Allah (SWT) ordered us to perform any worshipping that has no effect on your heart and soul? If you can’t feel that pleasure or effect, you should empty your heart from sins and other things distracting your concentration. We feel this during Ramadan (the month of fasting), as we pray al-taraweeh (prayer after al- ishaa usually performed in Ramadan), and enjoy doing it. These are the same prayers that are performed even after Ramadan.

Let’s continue with Dawud (PBUH). Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “The best fasting for Allah is Dawud’s; he used to fast every other day. The best prayer for Allah is Dawud’s; he used to sleep half the night. Of the remaining portion, two thirds of the night was used for prayer and one third for laying down. (i.e. he used to pray for 3 hours and a half every night”. (Sahih al-Bukhari, 3420). If you can perform Qiyam prayers even if for twenty minutes, after the prayer of al- ishaa, you would be performing the best worship for Allah (SWT) after the obligatory prayers.

As for the obligatory prayers, you can perform one raka’a (one unit) by reading one page of the Holy Qur’an, or equivalently, an eighth of a chapter in 2 raka’as. By being honest and persistent in praying Qiyam, you will get closer to Allah (SWT). After a week or two, Qiyam paryers will be the sweetest pleasure in your life. You will long for the night to be alone with Allah (SWT), praying to Him and asking for His forgiveness, until you meet Him satisfied by your worship on the Day of Resurrection, so he would send you to His Paradise.

It was reported by the Prophet’s companions (or their followers), that Allah (SWT) said to Dawud (PBUH), “Dawud, I have slaves whom I love, and who love me. I miss them and they miss me. If you do as they do, I will love you”. Dawud (PBUH) said, “O Allah! Who are they?” and Allah (SWT) said, “They watch and maintain the time of the prayers, and they miss Me as the birds miss their nests. When the night comes, and each one is alone with his lover, they come to Me praying with great humbleness, asking Me by My words and, getting closer to Me by numerating My gifts. Some of them are weeping, some are crying, and some are complaining. I see what they are suffering for Me, and I hear what they are saying to be closer to Me. My first gift for them is My light that I throw unto them. Hence, they talk to earth inhabitants about me, as I talk to Heaven habitants about them”. Imagine how much you are missing out on, if you haven’t tasted such sweetness before. Even if you enjoy the whole world with all its pleasures, and do not sense being close to Allah (SWT), you will never experience the best of life. Allah (SWT) says to Dawud (PBUH), “My second gift to them is that if the seven earths and seven skies vouch for them on the Day of Judgment, it will to their benefit. The third gift is that I’ll look at them. Do you know Dawud what I would give if I looked at someone?”

After all that shouldn’t we pray Qiyam prayers? Shouldn’t we imitate Dawud (PBUH) and the Prophet Muhammad’s companions? Shouldn’t we save ourselves from the drowning materialism, and get ourselves away from TV and internet at night? Allah (SWT) said to Dawud (PBUH), “O Dawud! If those who are running away from Me knew how much I long for their return, and how much I want them to repent, they would suffer from longing to Me. O Dawud! This is how I long for the return of those running away, can you imagine how much I love those hurrying to me?”

1) TMQ=Translation of the Meaning of the Qur'an. This translation is for the realized meaning, so far, of the stated (Surah:Ayah) of the Qur'an. Reading the translated meaning of the Qur'an can never replace reading it in Arabic, the language in which it was revealed.

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#2 dot

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 12:46 AM

The Prophet (PBUH) says in a Hadith collected by At-Tirmidhi from the supplication (dua’a) of Dawud (AS) (David), “O Allah! I ask for Your love and the love of whoever You love, and the love of an action that brings me closer to Your love. O Allah, make Your love more beloved to me than myself, my family, and cool water.” Why did he specify cool water? Do you know how cool water refreshes the soul on a hot day? So the meaning of the dua'a is: let Your love refresh my heart in the same way that cool water refreshes the soul. Therefore, the love of Allah is the center of life, and everything else revolves around it. This dua’a that the Prophet (PBUH) taught us was first said by Dawud (AS). O Allah, unite us with him in Paradise.

Kaa’b Al-Ahbar, a Jew who embraced Islam, said to Suhaib Ar-Rumi, “I swear by the One who parted the sea for Moses, that we found in our books that Dawud (PBUH) used to say in his dua’a whenever he finished his prayer, ‘O Allah, rectify my religion which controls all my affairs, and rectify my world in which I live, and rectify my after-life to which is my return. And make this life a chance for me to increase in goodness, and make death a relief from hardship. O Allah I seek refuge in Your pleasure from Your wrath, in Your forgiveness from Your punishment, and in You from You, I cannot count your favors (i.e. I cannot thank you as you deserve to be thanked). O Allah, no one can prevent what You give, and no one can give what You prevent.’"

Suhaib said, "By Allah, I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) says this dua’a after prayer." Can you see how all religions are but one nature, and the dua’a is connected? Pray to the Almighty so that you will not cut your good relations with Him.

I know a rich young man, every day on his way to the university in his car he used to make dua’a in the colloquial dialect because he does not know the dua’a that the sheikhs say. He used to say, “O my Lord, are You pleased with me or not? Do You forgive me or not? Bring me closer to You, O my Lord. O my Lord, every time I try to get rid of my sins I go back to them. No one can help me but You, so give me strength to stop sinning.” So I said to myself this young man is very close to Allah. Allah has given Dawud Al-Zabur (The Psalms), and he also gave him a voice that no other human possessed. When he prayed miracles happened; the mountains would start to glorify Allah with him, and their voice was heard. When he read Al-Zabur aloud while feeling the verses of Allah and interacting with them, the birds would gather from all around, glorifying Allah, and their glorification could be heard by other creatures. Can you believe that?

Allah says what can be translated as, “Verily, We made the mountains to glorify Our Praise with him [Dâwûd (David)] in the ‘Ashî (i.e. after the mid-day until sunset) and Ishrâq (i.e. after the sunrise until mid-day). And (so did) the birds assembled: all obedient to him.” (TMQ, 38:18-19) (1). This means that the mountains repeat the morning and evening remembrance, and gather every day repenting to Allah and asking His forgiveness. Imagine the place that Dawud occupies, and next to him a mountain, and birds flying above him, and they are all saying “There is no one worthy of worship except Allah”. “And there is not a thing that does not glorify His Praise." (TMQ, 17:44) Do you know that if you were glorifying Allah in front of the sea that the waves will glorify Him with you, and the breeze, and every atom of the universe around you.

It has been reported that a person of the Ansar (Usayd Ibn Hudayr) was reading Surat Al-Kahf on a Friday, and he started to react to the verses. It seems that this sincere reaction to the verses can shake one’s environment. His horse started making noises and acting anxious. When Usayd stopped reciting, the horse would stop. This had occurred many times. Usayd told the Prophet (PBUH) about this incident. He told him, "This is the tranquility that has been sent down by angels while you were reading the Qur'an, and the horse has been affected by the beauty of your recitation.” (Bukhari, Muslim).

This happens to anyone who remembers Allah and obeys Him; you feel tranquility and amazing comfort because you become in sync with the universe moving in the same direction and singing the same tune. The carpet that you are sitting on glorifies Allah, the wall that you recline on glorifies Allah’s praises. The earth rejoices when an obedient person walks over it. But when you disobey or are negligent of Allah’s orders, as with the situation in the West and with the atheists, you find them committing suicide because they are going against nature and against the divine norms. And you will not find any replacement for the laws of Allah, and you will not find any modification in the laws of Allah.

The Prophet (PBUH) used to say to the crescent moon, “my Lord and your Lord is Allah” (At-Tirmidhi). Meaning, even if we are separated by million of light years, we are all slaves of Allah.

Allah also gave Dawud another miracle. Allah says what can be translated as, “We made his kingdom strong.” (TMQ, 38:20). What is the relationship of tenderness and spirituality with making his kingdom strong? The answer is that when Dawud perfected his worship and the glorification of Allah, Allah protected his kingdom and increased his strength and the strength of the kingdom of the children of israel at the time when they perfected their worship. The same goes for us. If we want to regain the dignity of this nation, and if we want to liberate Al-Aqsa Masjid, this will not happen unless we worship Allah in the same way that Dawud did. Allah says what can be translated as, “…and (We) gave him Al-Hikmah (Prophethood) and sound judgment in speech and decision.“ (TMQ, 38:20) And he used to love goodness. Allah says what can be translated as, “and remember Our slave Dâwûd (David), owner of hands (endued with power).” (TMQ, 38:17). This description has two interpretations: the first one meaning “power” and the second meaning is that “he had many a hand in good deeds”. How many hands do you have? “Hands” here means charities, for relatives, working in orphanages and cancer centers, and helping people, and being generous to guests, and donating money for Palestine, etc.

Another miracle: in the Authentic Hadith, it has been related that the Prophet (PBUH) said that Allah has made it easy for Dawud to read the Qur’an. What? Quran or Zabur? The Hadith says that the Prophet (PBUH) said Qur'an and not Zabur. The scholars interpreted this that it is true that the Quran was not revealed to Dawud, but the Prophet (PBUH) considers the religion to be the same, the religion of Allah, and he wanted to make us feel the closeness to Dawud (PBUH). Dawud used to order his workers to saddle his horse and he would finish reading the Zabur before they did. Allah blessed the little time he had. Do you know that when you intend to pray two prayer units (rak'at) a little time before Dawn Prayer, you find that you have prayed, made dua’a, asked for forgiveness, and Dawn Prayer time has not come yet.

Among Dawud’s miracles: iron used to become malleable in his hands, so he used to shape it like you shape dough. Imagine how iron and steel are shaped in very hot ovens and how he shaped iron? Allah says what can be translated as, “And We made the iron soft for him.” (TMQ, 34:10). The universe belongs to Allah and He is free to do whatever He wishes in it. The stories of Dawud and Solaiman (AS) (Solomon) are full of miracles from Allah.

It is a fact that Allah made the universe follow certain laws, but to show us that He has control over all His creations He changes it; He orders the fire not to burn Ibrahim (Abraham), and the knife not to slaughter Isma’il (Ishmael), and the iron that requires very high temperature to melt to become malleable in the hands of Dawud, and the water that naturally flows stands for Musa (Moses) and the sun is stopped for Usha’ Ibn Nun (Joshua), and the moon is parted for Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon them all). So you should not fear anyone except Allah. The whole earth is His earth, and the universe is His universe, and in years the Aqsa will be liberated, and the Jews will be gone, and so will we, and the Qura’nic rule stays: “Whatsoever is on it (the earth) will perish. And the Face of your Lord full of Majesty and Honor will remain forever.” (TMQ, 55:26-27).

What did Dawud do when Allah made the iron malleable for him?

He made chain-mail armor for the people to wear for war to protect their bodies when they fought with sword. There is a big difference between the one who makes armor from iron to protect the lives of humans and save the earth from annihilation, and the one whose goal is destruction on earth and the spilling of blood.

“And We made the iron soft for him. Saying: "Make you perfect coats of mail, and balance well the rings of chain armor” (TMQ, 34:10-11) “Coats of mail” meaning armor that protects the body of the person from his head to his toes, and this way no matter how much he is hit, he is not affected. “Balance well the rings of chain armor” is a guidance from Allah to Dawud on how to make light and accurate iron rings, and we find the West are conceited with the inventions that they make, and they claim that it is from their ingenuity. Moreover, they do not acknowledge that this ingenuity is a blessing from Allah to them, and He can seize it whenever He wishes. These verses are an indication of what Allah tells of His prophets who were the first to invent things on earth, and despite that they were God-fearing and pious servants who were not lured by the materialistic world and the technology of their times. The Prophet (PBUH) says in a Hadith about Dawud that is narrated by Imam Ahmed, that he did not run away when he met an enemy, he did not break a promise, and he did not eat except from the labor of his own hands. These three qualities that the Hadith mentions eliminate the thoughts that some might have that religion is only about acts of worship. A truly religious person is:

1) courageous in times of battle,

2) possesses honorable character,

3) works and eats from what his hands earn.

Worship is not sufficient by itself without work in this life. Therefore, no one should think that prayer in the middle of the night is more favorable than going to the university or sitting for exams. Or a lady who worships the Almighty and prays to Him while at the same time hurts her neighbors should not think that she would get away with it because in this case her worship would not benefit her. The Prophet (PBUH) wants to teach us balance.

There is an important remark and that is the most dangerous kind of person harming Islam is the worshipper who has bad character so that when people deal with him they are repelled from religion, and this makes people distant from religion. We should not give a chance for the sinners to say, "Look at those who claim they are religious and have bad character." I advise you to consider that.

In addition to his character, worship, and manufacturing armor, Dawud used to be a judge among people and resolve their disputes. The Qur’an recounts the time when Allah tested him. Dawud used to spend his time between teaching people, manufacturing iron to earn a living, and taking time for worship. Allah sent two angels in the form of two disputing people. Allah says what can be translated as, “And has the news of the litigants reached you? When they climbed over the wall into (his) Mihrâb (a praying place or a private room),” (TMQ, 38:21). Why did Allah send them to him in his praying place? Because Allah wants to teach the judges and muftis wisdom from this verse, which is for them not to make judgment when they are stressed, or in a bad mood, and never make judgment before hearing both sides.

“When they entered in upon Dâwûd (David), he was terrified of them. They said: "Fear not! (We are) two litigants, one of whom has wronged the other, therefore judge between us with truth, and treat us not with injustice, and guide us to the Right Way. Verily, this, my brother (in religion) has ninety-nine ewes, while I have (only) one ewe, and he says: "Hand it over to me, and he overpowered me in speech." (Dâwûd) said (immediately without listening to the opponent): "He has wronged you in demanding your ewe in addition to his ewes. And, verily, many partners oppress one another, except those who believe and do righteous good deeds, and they are few." And Dâwûd guessed that We have tried him and he sought forgiveness of his Lord, and he fell down prostrate and turned (to Allâh) in repentance.” (TMQ, 38: 22-24).

When he declared the judgment before hearing the other person, the angles disappeared, and Dawud realized that he was wrong in his quick judgment. We find these days that some Islamic countries teach the judges this divine rule. When the angels disappeared, he asked Allah for forgiveness and returned to Allah in repentance, and Allah immediately forgave him. Allah says what can be translated as, “So We forgave him that, and verily, for him is a near access to Us, and a good place of (final) return (Paradise).” (TMQ, 38:25)

At the time of Dawud’s death, his son Solaiman (PBUH) washed his body and buried him. In the Musnad of Imam Ahmad, Abu Huraira, (RA) relates in a Hadith of the Prophet (PBUH) how Dawud died. These were situations full of lessons for each of us to learn from, because death might suddenly befall us.

Dawud used to be very jealous when it comes to his wives, and when he left his house, he would lock them in. One day, they found a man in the house, so his wives were worried because of his jealousy. Dawud was very upset, and the stranger would not move, so Dawud asked him: Who are you?

The man said, "I am the one who does not fear kings. I am the one who is not stopped by barriers." Dawud said, "I recognize you, you are the angel of death. Go ahead and take my soul because it is my time" and Dawud died despite the glorification of the mountains and the birds with him and the softness of the iron in his hand. True are the words of Allah when He says what can be translated as, “(And) they all shall return to Us.” (TMQ, 21:93)

I would like to point out two issues. First, the issue of polygamy: without getting into its details, we see that many people attack Islam harshly on this issue. Why is this? Many prophets practiced polygamy: Ibrahim, Dawud, Solaiman (AS), and others. On the contrary, Islam is the only religion that made laws in this regard and limited the number to only four wives. I do not mention this issue to attack women or to encourage men to be polygamous; I want everyone to know that Islam is being attacked for no rational reason and we do not know how to respond to these attacks.

Also, notice another issue in this story, there are men who prohibit their wives from wearing hijab. This is going against the nature; the man wants to let the people know that he is married to a beautiful woman. This problem is widespread to the extent that some women are suffering from husbands who order them not to wear hijab until they become old. This means that at that point (when she is older) he will no longer need her. So my sister, no matter what the situation or the pressure, do not give in or surrender but keep your hijab until the day you meet the destroyer of desires (death), and may Allah help you.

A word to the men: we are Easterners; this issue is not just religion and divine law; where is your sense of honor and manhood? The Prophet (PBUH) said, "(There are) three kinds of people Allah does not look at on the Day of Judgment, He does not purify them, and a grievous punishment awaits them: the one disobedient to his parents, the woman who wears clothing like that of men, and the man who observes women of his family sinning, and has knowledge of it, and is not disturbed by it." (Authentic, Narrated by al-Bukhary, 2358).

I know a man who was married to a beautiful woman and he was very happy when he saw her dressed in clothes that showed her beauty; and the people would be looking at her in the clubs. Allah tested him with an illness that caused him paralysis in the lower part of his body. He would see people while they are enjoying his wife’s beauty, and he could no longer approach her, but he was very jealous. The consequence is usually from the same nature of the deed.

The second issue we learn from the story of the death of Dawud (PBUH) is that his son Solaiman was obedient to him. He set a great example. Consider Solaiman’s love for his father. The Prophet (PBUH) said about Solaiman, "He washed his body, and wrapped him by the time of sunrise. When it became hot, Solaiman was worried that the number of people who will pray on Dawud’s body would be small. Solaiman ordered the birds saying: O birds! Make shade over the prayer place. So the birds made shade on the prayer place, but the heat was intense because the birds prevented the air. So Solomon said, 'O birds move your wings.' Abu Huraira said, 'I saw the Prophet (PBUH) move his hands as the birds move their wings.' " (Ahmad) All of this was done so that many creatures would pray over Dawud’s body. In our time, we find some people who want to bury their parents, and they do not care if many people pray for their souls or not.

I remember hearing a story, when I was visiting Emirates, about a group of people who were building an orphanage. They told a very rich businessman that they had worked very hard and spent a lot of money; they were able to finish two stories but could not complete the rest because of lack of money. The man told them that he wished that they had told him before and he said was ready to pay for the whole thing. He promised them that the next day they would find the money they needed to allow them to finish the building process. The next day the businessman died, so they went to his son and told him the whole story. He told them, “I do not know who you are, and my father died and his inheritance has been distributed among his heirs.” That was the end of the story.

The man who told me the story said that he was very sad. Time passed, and he traveled to France where he met the son of the rich man and his wife. He told them that the father had funded many charitable projects in Mauritania, and suggested that they go with him and visit them, themselves. The son strongly refused at first, and then finally agreed to go there just for forty- eight hours. When he got there he saw extreme poverty. When they were walking around, he saw some children leaving a small clinic very happy that they received medicine. It seems that this clinic was very rare over there. The son asked about it and he was told that this clinic was built from charity. The son went to the clinic and he found the name of his father, the rich businessman, written on the door as one of the contributors. He cried deeply, and asked how much more money they needed for charitable work. A father who did that for sure will be granted mercy when he dies. So I remind everyone about honoring and obeying parents during their lifetime and after their death.

So Dawud died, and his son Solaiman (AS) inherited from him and became the king of the Children of israel. Allah gave him four miracles: 1) understanding the language of the birds, 2) making the jinn serve him, and the disobedient of them was to be chained, 3) subjecting the wind to him; it blew gently by his order, and 4) making metals malleable for him to use making weapons to fight the enemies of Allah.

We learn from this that Allah is the One Who taught the minds technology, however, corruption became widespread because of the lack of gratitude. The civilization of Solaiman (AS) was superior to the American civilization because it was a civilization that believed in Allah. History did not witness, and earth did not observe, a civilization that was greater than one of the two following civilizations: the civilization of Solaiman (PBUH) and the civilization of the nation of Muhammad (PBUH). The whole universe did not see such prosperity as at these times, and note that the civilization of Muhammad (PBUH) was established by people, not jinn.

Nowadays, people suffer the consequences of corruption and depression even in America and England. You find people sleeping in parks and begging because they do not have shelters during the cold winters and in the snow. The materialistic civilization that is very stingy does not care about the poor.

However, at the time of Omar Ibn-Abdul-Aziz, the money of Zakat would reach him, and he ordered it spent on the poor and destitute. But there were no poor to be found. He ordered it spent to prepare the Muslim army for battle. But the armies were found to be well prepared, and fully equipped with strength. He ordered the money to be spent to pay off any debts. It was found that the debts had been paid off across the Islamic nation. So he ordered the money to be spent to help people get married, but there was money left over. So he said spend it on the Jews and Christians who live in the Muslim land. So, they found that the Islamic government had provided the people with all their necessities.

At this point he said his famous words, "Use this money to buy wheat and spread it over the mountains so the birds would eat from the goodness of the Muslims.” There is a big difference between the one who does that, and the one who throws wheat in the sea so its price would not fall while there are people who are in dire need, and are dying of hunger."

When a civilization is built on human endeavor for the cause of Allah, it becomes greater than the four miracles of Solaiman. Lessons to be learned:

1) Total submission to Allah

2) I will share with you a divine recipe, whoever follows it will live happily all his life and no harm will affect him. Wake up twenty minutes before Fajr prayer, pray two units, give sujud (prostration) its due right [i.e. take time with it], then make dua’a to Allah and ask His forgiveness in the time that He loves the most. Then pray Fajr (men should pray in the masjid). Then say the morning remembrance while on your way back from the masjid. After a while you will get used to that, and this will become a daily routine.

3) The bounties of Allah will multiply when you are grateful to Him, and when you use them in His obedience. And the bounties will diminish when you are ungrateful or use them to disobey Allah.

4) Kindness and obedience to parents

5) The Islamic civilization is the best civilization that ever lived on earth.

6) When does Allah grant us victory and leadership of the humankind? When the youth establish connections with Allah, and when they seek to develop Muslim countries. This is part of giving victory to Islam, so we do not have a lost generation “who have given up As-Salât (the prayers) [i.e. made their prayers to be lost, either by not offering them or by not offering them perfectly or by not offering them in their proper fixed times] and have followed lusts” (TMQ, 19:59). The youth should also be attentive to Allah, and they should not be lenient in committing sins, even if it is a seemingly minor sin as cheating during exams, as cheating for a minute teaches you a corrupt way of life.

7) Palestine—our goal in life should be its liberation. This will not take place suddenly between an evening and a day, but your success could be a contribution toward the generation that will be granted victory, God willing.

1) TMQ=Translation of the Meaning of the Qur'an. This translation is for the realized meaning, so far, of the stated (Surah:Ayah) of the Qur'an. Reading the translated meaning of the Qur'an can never replace reading it in Arabic, the language in which it was revealed.

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#3 islamiworld1

islamiworld1

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Posted 29 September 2014 - 09:18 AM

Thank you very much for giving me this beautifull knowledge..