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Abu Bakr As Siddique

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Sayyidina Abu Bakr As Siddique

 

Early Life

"No one has been a better companion to me than Abu Bakr," said the holy Prophet in his last sermon. A great reward indeed! Abu Bakr had earned it. All his life he stood by the side of the Prophet. He did not care for his life. He did not care for his riches. He did not care for what others said about him. His only ambition was to serve the Prophet more than anyone else. The cost did not matter. The ambition was fulfilled. And Abu Bakr got his reward in full. The Messenger of Allah was well pleased with him. He gave him the first place among the Companions. Abu Bakr was to be the first man to fill the place of the Prophet. He was also to lie in eternal rest by the prophet's side.

 

Abu Bakr was two years younger than the Prophet. His parents named him Abdul Kaaba, which means the servant of the Kaaba. When he became a Muslim, the Prophet changed his pagan name to Abdullah. However, in early youth he had adopted the surname of Abu Bakr. He had come to be known by this name among people. Even to this day, the world generally knows him as Abu Bakr.

 

From early years, Abu Bakr was known for good and upright nature. He was honest and truthful. He came of a noble family. These things won him respect among the people. His goodness also won him the friendship of young Muhammad (Peace be Upon him). The friendship was to prove lifelong and history making.

 

When he grew up, Abu Bakr became a rich merchant. But he used to be very kind-hearted. When he saw someone in trouble, his heart melted. He did his best to help him. If his money could remove suffering, he did not care home much he had to spend. Once he gave away thirty-five dirhams out of his total fortune of forty thousand. He was so honest in his dealings that people kept their money with him. Above all, Abu Bakr had a sincere heart and a firm will. Nothing could stop him from doing what he thought was the right thing to do.

 

Service to the Prophet

Abu Bakr was the first adult male to accept Islam. After the first revelation, the holy Prophet told him what had happened at Mount Hira. He told him that Allah had made him His Messenger. Abu Bakr did not stop to think. He at once became a Muslim. Once the holy Prophet himself remarked, "I called people to Islam. Everybody thought over it, at least for a while. But this was not the case with Abu Bakr. The moment I put Islam before him, he accepted it without any hesitation."

 

Abu Bakr did more than that. As soon as he became a Muslim, he began to preach Islam to others. He had many friends. The friends knew that Abu Bakr was sincere and truthful. They knew he would never support a wrong cause. He called them to Islam and they became Muslims. Among them were men like Uthman, Zubair, Talha, Abdur Rahman bin Auf and Saad bin Waqqas. These men later became the pillars of Islam. The holy Prophet called at Abu Bakr's house every day. The two sat down and thought out ways of spreading Islam. Together they went to people and places and delivered the message of Allah. Wherever the holy Prophet went, Abu Bakr went with him.

 

Risks His Life

The message of Islam made the people of Mecca very angry. The idols were their gods. The holy Prophet openly mocked at these gods. He declared they could do neither any good nor harm. Among the chiefs of Mecca was one Abu Jahl. He became the greatest enemy of the holy Prophet. He was always on the lookout to hurt him or even kill him, if he could. Abu Bakr kept an eye on this man, lest he should do a grave harm to Islam.

 

One day the holy Prophet was saying his prayers in the Kaaba. He was totally lost in the thoughts of Allah. Abu Jahl and some other chiefs of Mecca were sitting in the courtyard of the Kaaba. "I must finish with Muhammad today," said Abu Jahl. So saying, he took a long piece of cloth. He put it around the holy Prophet's neck. Then he twisted it hard. He was going to strangle the Messenger of Allah to death. The other chiefs looked on and laughed. Abu Bakr happened to see this from a distance. He at once ran to the help of the Prophet. He pushed Abu Jahl aside and took off the cloth from around the holy Prophet's neck. Thereupon Abu Jahl and other enemies of Islam came down upon Abu Bakr. They beat him very much. Indeed, the beating was so severe that Abu Bakr fell down senseless. He was carried home. He could not regain his senses till after several hours. And when he did come to himself, the first question he asked was "Is the Prophet unhurt?" Abu Bakr did not care for his own suffering. He was glad that he was able to save the Prophet's life. Abu Bakr knew full well that if any harm came to the Prophet, the only hope of mankind would be gone. This made him risk everything he held dear, for the safety of the Prophet and for the spread of his message.

 

Liberation of Slaves

Abu Bakr's wealth came to the rescue of many helpless Muslim slaves. He bought them from their inhuman masters and set them free. Bilal, was one of those slaves. He was the slave of Omayya bin Khalaf. Omayya was a heartless man. He would strip Bilal of all clothes, make him lie on the burning sand at mid-day and then lash him mercilessly. Despite this torture Bilal would go on saying, "Allah is one! Allah is one!" One day Abu Bakr happened to pass by. He was greatly moved by the sight. "Why are you so cruel to this helpless man?" he asked Omayya. "If you feel for him, why don't you buy him?" retorted Omayya. So Abu Bakr at once bought Bilal at a heavy price and set him free. Bilal afterwards became the well-known "Muazzin" [ one who gives the call for prayer ] at the Prophet's Masjid.

 

The Title of "Siddiq"

In the tenth year of his mission, the holy Prophet had the Miraj of Ascension. In the morning, after the ascension had taken place, the holy Prophet talked to people about the Miraj. This drew the jeers of his enemies. The talk was going on when Abu Bakr came up.

 

"Do you know, Abu Bakr, what news your friend has for you in the morning?" said one of the people. "He says he was on the highest heaven last night, having a talk with Allah, the Almighty. Would you believe it?" "I would believe anything that the Messenger of Allah says," replied Abu Bakr.

 

When the holy Prophet learnt of this, he at once said, "Abu Bakr is the `Siddiq'." `Siddiq' is a person so sincere of heart that doubts never mar his love. Abu Bakr earned this title because his faith was too strong to be shaken by anything.

 

Migration to Medina

When the Meccans were intent on putting out, once and for all, the light of Islam, Allah commanded the holy Prophet to move to Medina. It was Abu Bakr who made all the arrangements for the historic journey. For three days he and the Prophet lay hidden in the Thaur cave. Abu Bakr's slave tended the flocks of goats near the cave all day and supplied them fresh milk for food. His son, Abdullah, brought news about what the Meccans were doing. The Meccans were searching for the holy Prophet like mad hounds. Once they came right to the mouth of the cave. Abu Bakr grew pale with fright. He feared, not for himself, but for the Prophet. However, the holy Prophet remained perfectly calm. "Do not fear," he said to Abu Bakr, "certainly Allah is with us."

 

Participation in Battles

Abu Bakr took part in all the battles that the holy Prophet had to fight. At Badr, one of Abu Bakr's sons, who had not yet embraced Islam, was fighting on the side of the Meccan. Afterwards, when he became a Muslim, he one day said, "Father! at Badr you were twice under my sword. But my love for you held back my hand." "Son!" remarked Abu Bakr, "if I had got that chance only once, you would have been no more."

 

Tabuk was the last expedition of the holy Prophet. He was keen to make it a great success. He asked people to help the expedition with whatever they could. This time Abu Bakr beat all past records. He took all his money and household articles and heaped them at the Prophet's feet.

"Have you left back anything for your wife and children?" asked the holy Prophet. "Allah and His Apostle are enough for them," replied Abu Bakr calmly. Those standing around were stunned. It was impossible to outdo Abu Bakr in the field of service to Islam. The holy Prophet felt much pleased at this answer. He made Abu Bakr the standard-bearer of the expedition.

 

Prophet's (Salallahu Alayhi Wasallam) Death

The holy Prophet occupied a unique place among his people. He was everything to them. The news of the Prophet's death came as a stunning shock to everyone. Abu Bakr entered the Masjid, he took his stand in a corner of the courtyard and called out to the people. All eyes were turned towards him. Then he began his famous address:

"O people! If anyone among you worshipped Muhammad, let him know that Muhammad is dead. But those who worship Allah, let him know that He lives and will never die. Let all of us recall the words of the Qur'an. It says, `Muhammad is only a Messenger of Allah. There have been Messengers before him. What then, will you turn back from Islam, if he dies or is killed?"

 

These words of Abu Bakr worked magic. In no time the confusion was gone. The words of the Qur'an swept of all doubts from people's minds.

 

Election of Abu Bakr

Abu Bakr became Caliph by the general consent of the people. On the following day, Abu Bakr went to the Prophet's Masjid. Here people took the general oath of loyalty. When this was over, Abu Bakr mounted the pulpit as the Caliph of Islam. Then he spoke to the gathering as follows:

"O people, I have been elected your leader, although I am not better than anyone from among you. If I do any good, give me your support. If I go wrong, set me right. Listen, truth is honesty and untruth is dishonesty. The weak among you are powerful in my eyes, as long as I do not get them their due, Allah willing. The powerful among you are weak in my eyes, as long as I do not take away from them what is due to others, Allah willing." "Listen, if people give up striving for the cause of Allah, Allah sends down disgrace on them. If a people become evil doers, Allah sends down calamities on them." "Listen, you must obey me as long as I obey Allah and His Messenger. If I disobey Allah and His Messenger, you are free to disobey me."

 

Abu Bakr showed by his example that in Islam government means government of the people, by the people and for the people.

 

Usama's Expedition

Some weeks before his death, the holy Prophet has nominated Usama to lead an expedition against Syria. He was to avenge the death of his father, Zaid, the freed slave of the holy Prophet. Zaid was killed by the Syrians in the battle of Muta. The preparations of the expedition were under way when the holy Prophet fell seriously ill and passed away. That held up Usama's expedition for some weeks. As soon as Abu Bakr became Caliph, the first thing he thought of was the sending out of the expedition. Some of the companions said that he had better drop the idea for the time being. Trouble was brewing all around, they said. But Abu Bakr would not listen to them. "How can I fold up the flag," he asked, "which the holy Prophet himself unfurled? It is simply unthinkable."

 

Then someone suggested that Usama was too raw - he was below twenty - to lead the expedition. The suggestion made Abu Bakr angry. "What right have I," he demanded, "to dismiss a man appointed by the Messenger of Allah?"

 

So the expedition left under Usama, about three weeks after the passing away of the holy Prophet. Abu Bakr accompanied Usama some distance out of Medina. The youthful commander was riding a horse, while the Caliph walked by his side. Usama said, "O successor of the holy Prophet, you also get on a horse and allow men to get down." "By Allah," replied Abu Bakr, "I will agree to neither of the two things. What harm is there is there if a little dust falls on my feet, while I go some steps in the way of Allah? For every step one takes in Allah's way, one gets the reward of seven hundred good deeds."

 

Before the Caliph bade farewell to Usama, he gave him much useful advice. Some of it was:

"Look! Be not dishonest. Do not deceive anyone. Do not hide the booty you get. Do not mutilate anyone. Do not kill the aged, the children and the women. Do not set fire to date palms. Do not cut down fruit trees. Do not slaughter a goat, or a cow, or a camel, except for purposes of food. You will come across people who have give up the world and are sitting in monasteries. Leave them alone."

Usama's expedition proved very successful. He raided the frontier districts of Syria and was back in Medina after forty days.

 

Abu Bakr had no more than ten thousand troops when he took over as Caliph. With this small force, he had to put down a countrywide revolt. To all appearance the task was hopeless. But Abu Bakr met with amazing success. Much of this success was due to his unshakable faith in Allah. "Islam is the path of truth revealed by Allah," he said, "so Allah must defend it against enemies." It was not so much on troops as on Allah's help that Abu Bakr depended. Results proved that he was right in his faith.

 

Abu Bakr's Last Illness

On the 7th of Jamadi-ul-Akhir, 13 A.H., Abu Bakr was taken ill. He had sever fever. Everything was done to bring down the fever, but all in vain. It became clear to the aged Caliph that his end was coming.

 

Umar's Nomination

Welfare of Muslims had always been the first care of Abu Bakr. He would allow nothing that made Islam weak. The thing he feared most was division among Muslims. He remembered what had happened after the death of the Holy Prophet. He wanted to make sure that no differences should divide Muslims after he was no more. Unity was the secret strength. Unity must be had at any price.

 

As his sickness grew, Abu Bakr gave more and more thought to the matter. Who should be the Caliph after him? After careful thought, he chose to nominate Omar. He put his proposal before the leading Companions. Most of them liked the proposal. When all Companions agreed, Abu Bakr called Othman. He dictated to him Omar's nomination. It was read out to the people. It said:

"This is the will of Abu Bakr, the Caliph of the Holy Prophet. He is making the will when he is about to leave for the next world. This is the time when even a non-believer begins to believe and even a sinner begins to trust in Allah. I appoint Omar bin Khattab as your ruler. In appointing him, I have kept your welfare fully in mind. I hope he will be truthful and just. But if he leaves his path and becomes unjust, I know nothing about the unseen, I have only the well being of Muslims at heart. Everybody is responsible for what he does."

 

Abu Bakr Passes Away

After an illness of two weeks, Abu Bakr passed away. He was sixty-three at the time. He was buried by the side of the Holy Prophet.

 

Before his death he said, "Do not use new cloth to cover my dead body. The sheet of cloth I have on will do for me. Wash it clean." "But this is too old and worn, father," said his daughter Aisha. "This old and worn sheet will do for me," he replied. This parting wish was acted upon. The second wish of the dying Caliphs was, "Sell my land and pay back in the public treasury all the money I got as my salary." This was also done. Before he became the Caliph, Abu Bakr was a well-to-day merchant. The affairs of the Caliphate left him no time to look after his own business. The matter was put before the Companions. They allowed the Caliph a salary of six thousand dirhams a year. All this money was paid back to the Bait-ul-Mal (the Public Treasury) after the Caliph's death.

 

Thus Abu Bakr, the first Caliph, left behind a noble example of selfless service. He lived and worked for Islam to the last breath. And for his tireless labors, he sought no worldly reward.

Abu Bakr was Caliph for only two years, three months and ten days. This was a relatively short period of time in the life of people. But during this short period, Abu Bakr was able to do great things for Islam. These achievements have made his name immortal. They have placed him among the greatest men of all time.

 

Abu Bakr had several sons and many near relatives. For public offices, he did not choose anyone of them. He rather chose other people who were more fit for public service. He had to nominate his own successor to prevent quarrels. But his choice fell on none of his own relatives. His choice was rather the man whom he honestly believed to be the best among the Companions. All the same, he did not force his choice on people. He put his proposal before the Companions. When they had agreed to it, he put it before the people.

 

In short, Abu Bakr showed the world what government of the people, for the people, and by the people really meant. Neither the East nor the West had ever known such a form of government before.

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Wasalaam

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asalaamu'alaikum

 

Abu Bakr As Sideeq

 

 

 

The First Caliph, Abu Bakr (632-634 A.C.)

 

"If I were to take a friend other than my Lord, I would take Abu Bakr as a friend." (Hadith)

 

 

Election to the Caliphate

 

The Prophet's closest Companion, Abu Bakr, was not present when the Holy Prophet (peace be on him) breathed his last in the apartment of his beloved wife of later years, Aisha, Abu Bakr's daughter. When he came to know of the Prophet's passing, Abu Bakr hurried to the house of sorrow.

 

 

"How blessed was your life and how beatific is your death,"

he whispered as he kissed the cheek of his beloved friend and master who now was no more.

 

When Abu Bakr came out of the Prophet's apartment and broke the news, disbelief and dismay gripped the community of Muslims in Medina. Muhammad (peace be on him) had been the leader, the guide and the bearer of Divine revelation through whom they had been brought from idolatry and barbarism into the way of God. How could he die? Even Umar, one of the bravest and strongest of the Prophet's Companions, lost his composure and drew his sword and threatened to kill anyone who said that the Prophet was dead. Abu Bakr gently pushed him aside, ascended the steps of the lectern in the Masjid and addressed the people, saying

 

 

"O people, verily whoever worshipped Muhammad, behold! Muhammad is indeed dead. But whoever worships God, behold! God is alive and will never die."

And then he concluded with a verse from the Qur'an:

 

 

"And Muhammad is but a Messenger. Many Messengers have gone before him; if then he dies or is killed, will you turn back upon your heels?" [3:144]

On hearing these words, the people were consoled. Despondency gave place to confidence and tranquility. This critical moment had passed. But the Muslim community was now faced with an extremely serious problem: that of choosing a leader. After some discussion among the Companions of the Prophet who had assembled in order to select a leader, it became apparent that no one was better suited for this responsibility than Abu Bakr. A portion of the speech the First Caliph gave after his election has already been quoted in the introduction.

 

 

Abu Bakr's Life

 

Abu Bakr ('The Owner of Camels') was not his real name. He acquired this name later in life because of his great interest in raising camels. His real name was Abdul Ka'aba ('Slave of Ka'aba'), which Muhammad (peace be on him) later changed to Abdullah ('Slave of God'). The Prophet also gave him the title of 'Siddiq' - 'The Testifier to the Truth.'

 

Abu Bakr was a fairly wealthy merchant, and before he embraced Islam, was a respected citizen of Mecca. He was three years younger than Muhammad (peace be on him) and some natural affinity drew them together from earliest child hood. He remained the closest Companion of the Prophet all through the Prophet's life. When Muhammad first invited his closest friends and relatives to Islam, Abu Bakr was among the earliest to accept it. He also persuaded Uthman and Bilal to accept Islam. In the early days of the Prophet's mission, when the handful of Muslims were subjected to relentless persecution and torture, Abu Bakr bore his full share of hardship. Finally when God's permission came to emigrate from Mecca, he was the one chosen by the Prophet to accompany him on the dangerous journey to Medina. In the numerous battles which took place during the life of the Prophet, Abu Bakr was always by his side. Once, he brought all his belongings to the Prophet, who was raising money for the defense of Medina. The Prophet asked "Abu Bakr, what did you leave for your family?" The reply came: "God and His Prophet."

 

Even before Islam, Abu Bakr was known to be a man of upright character and amiable and compassionate nature. All through his life he was sensitive to human suffering and kind to the poor and helpless. Even though he was wealthy, he lived very simply and spent his money for charity, for freeing slaves and for the cause of Islam. He often spent part of the night in supplication and prayer. He shared with his family a cheerful and affectionate home life.

 

 

Abu-Bakr's Caliphate

 

Such, then, was the man upon whom the burden of leadership fell at the most sensitive period in the history of the Muslims.

 

As the news of the Prophet's death spread, a number of tribes rebelled and refused to pay Zakat (poor-due), saying that this was due only to the Prophet (peace be on him). At the same time a number of impostors claimed that the prophethood had passed to them after Muhammad and they raised the standard of revolt. To add to all this, two powerful empires, the Eastern Roman and the Persian, also threatened the new-born Islamic state at Medina.

 

Under these circumstances, many Companions of the Prophet, including Umar, advised Abu Bakr to make concessions to the Zakat evaders, at least for a time. The new Caliph disagreed. He insisted that the Divine Law cannot be divided, that there is no distinction between the obligations of Zakat and Salat (prayer), and that any compromise with the injunctions of God would eventually erode the foundations of Islam. Umar and others were quick to realize their error of judgment. The revolting tribes attacked Medina but the Muslims were prepared. Abu Bakr himself led the charge, forcing them to retreat. He then made a relentless war on the false claimants to prophethood, most of whom submitted and again professed lslam.

 

The threat from the Roman Empire had actually arisen earlier, during the Prophet's lifetime. The Prophet had organized an army under the command of Usama, the son of a freed slave. The army had not gone far when the Prophet had fallen ill so they stopped. After the death of the Prophet the question was raised whether the army should be sent again or should remain for the defence of Medina. Again Abu Bakr showed a firm determination. He said, "I shall send Usama's army on its way as ordered by the Prophet, even if I am left alone."

 

The final instructions he gave to Usama prescribed a code of conduct in war which remains unsurpassed to this day. Part of his instructions to the Muslim army were:

 

 

"Do not be deserters, nor be guilty of disobedience. Do not kill an old man, a woman or a child. Do not injure date palms and do not cut down fruit trees. Do not slaughter any sheep or cows or camels except for food. You will encounter persons who spend their lives in monasteries. Leave them alone and do not molest them."

Khalid bin Waleed had been chosen by the Prophet (peace be on him) on several occasions to lead Muslim armies. A man of supreme courage and a born leader, his military genius came to full flower during the Caliphate of Abu Bakr. Throughout Abu Bakr's reign Khalid led his troops from one victory to another against the attacking Romans.

 

Another contribution of Abu Bakr to the cause of Islam was the collection and compilation of the verses of the Qur'an.

 

Abu Bakr died on 21 Jamadi-al Akhir, 13 A.H. (23 August 634 A.C.), at the age of sixty-three, and was buried by the side of the Holy Prophet (peace be on him). His caliphate had been of a mere twenty-seven months duration. In this brief span, however, Abu Bakr had managed, by the Grace of God, to strengthen and consolidate his community and the state, and to secure the Muslims against the perils which had threatened their existence.

 

 

source: MSA-USC library

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Virtues of Abu Bakr As-Siddeeq

 

 

Sheikh Abdul Muhsin Ibn Muhammad Al-Qaasim

 

9, Dhul Qa'dah 1421 (2, February 2001)

 

All praise is due to Allah. May His peace and blessing be upon the Prophet, his household and companions.

 

Dear Muslims! Fear Allah and be dutiful to Him, for the fear of Allah is victory in this world and the provision for the hereafter.

 

Dear brothers! Every nation and community gets proud of their noble and distinguished personalities. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam said: “Man is with the one he loves†(Muslim). Therefore, every Muslim is indebted to the companions of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam for his Eeman, knowledge, acts of worship and prosperity. For, they were the ones who conveyed the religion to us and fought relentlessly in the way of Allah until the religion became consolidated. Ibn Mas'ood said: “The companions of Muhammad Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam are –by Allah!– the best of this Ummah, the purest of heart and most knowledgeable. Allah appointed them for the companionship of His Prophet and the establishment of His religion.†Ash-Shafi'ee also said: “The companions are far above us in knowledge, religiousity, guidance and all other avenues by which one can gain knowledge and guidance. Their opinion pertaining to issues concerning us is better for us than our own opinion.â€

 

Allah has in fact praised and informed us that He is pleased with them. He says: “ And the first to embrace Islam of the Muhajirun (those who migrated from Makkah to Al-Madinah) and the Ansar (the citizens of Al-Madinah who helped and gave aid to the Muhajirun) and also those who follow them exactly (in Faith). Allah is Well-Pleased with them as they are well-pleased with Him. He has prepared for them gardens under which rivers flow (Paradise), to dwell therein forever. That is the supreme success." (At-Tawbah 9:100).

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Each and every one of the Sahaabah has a laudable role he played in the consolidation of Islaam, knowing their stories enlivens hearts and emulating them brings felicity. Ibn Al-Jawzee said: “The Salaf used to teach their children love of the Abu Bakr and 'Umar as they taught them a Surah of the Qur’an.†The best and most distinguished of the Sahaabah is Abu Bakr As-Siddeeq. He was revered among the Quraysh and loved. He was an expert in Arab genealogy and history. When Islam came, he was the first to believe in the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam and ever since remained on the truth. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam said: “I said: O you people! I am the Messenger of Allah to you all. And you replied: “You have lied? But Abu Bakr said: “You have said the truth? (Al-Bukhari).

 

Abu Bakr was a man of outstanding achievements and noble deeds. He holds excellent position and he was resolute, merciful, forbearing and generous. He defended the religion of Allah and helped His Messenger Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam. He was the first of the rightly guided Khaleefahs. He never drank alcohol, never worshipped idols and never told a lie. He was the first person to call to Islam and Allah made accept Islam through him five of those who were given glad tidings of paradise namely: ‘Uthman, Talha, Sa’d, Abdur-Rahmaan bin ‘Auf . He was the first person to be persecuted in the way of Allah. He accompanied the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam right from the beginning of his mission till his death and was the only one to migrate with the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam . The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam said: “No money has benefited me like that Abu Bakr†He has once spent all his money in the cause of Allah. 'Umar said: “The Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam enjoined us to make a Sadaqah and I brought half of my money to him. When he asked me about what I had left for my family, I told him that I left for them the like of what I had brought. As regards Abu Bakr, he came with all that he had. The Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam asked him what he had left for his family. He answered that he had left for them Allah and His Messenger. Then 'Umar said: “I shall never compete with him in anything again.†(Abu Dawood). Abu Bakr As-Sideeq was a good-spirited person. He never ask anything from anybody. He said: “My friend enjoined me never to ask anything from people.†(Ahmad). He was also the most-firm in faith among his Ummah Even if his faith is to be weighed against the faith of the whole Ummah -excluding the Prophet- his faith would out- weigh theirs. Abu Sa’eed Al-Khudre said: “Abu Bakr was the most knowledeable among us.†The Ummah never differ on a issue during his lifetime except that he settled it.

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He was so loved and revered by the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam that he deputised him to lead people in prayer and to lead the first hajj contingent from Al-Madeenah. Sheikhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah said: “Knowledge of the rites of Hajj is the most-subtle of all acts of worship and there is no issue of acts of worship that is more complicated than it. If not because of Abu Bakr’s wide knowledge, the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam would not have made him the leader of the first Hajj contingent.â€

 

His whole life was spent in the way of Allah. He has never left Madeenah except for the purpose of Hajj, Umrah or Jihaad and all his money was spent in the cause of Allah. His daughter 'Aaishah said: “When he died, he did not leave neither gold nor silver coin.â€

 

Abu Bakr was the bravest of all the Companions. He would always be found in the forefront when the war became terrible. He was the one who protected the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam with his body during the battle of Badr and he was firm and resolute during the famous Battle of Hunayn. He said of himself: “Fear never entered my heart since the day I was with the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam in the cave.†When people were in the state of bewilderment concerning the death of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam, Abu Bakr it was, who only demonstrated self-control and bravery to face the situation. It was then that he made his popular speech: “Whoever worships Muhammad, Muhammad is now dead, but whoever worships Allah, Allah is Ever-living, Immortal.â€

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Abu Bakr led the Muslim Ummah after the death of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam with justice and wisdom and consolidated Islam. His opinion was the most correct. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam used to seek for his views first among his companions. “Umar also used to consult him during the Prophetic Era because of his intelligence. It was only Abu Bakr who had the honour of the fact that his father, mother, children and grandchildren embraced Islam during the lifetime of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam. None of the Sahaabah had the same honour. Sheikhul-Islaam said: “The household of Abu Bakr is that of Eemaan. There was no hypocrite among them.†It was also said that: "Eemaan do have households as hyporisy does. The household of Abu Bakr was that of Eemaan.†Abu Bakr was a highly devoted companion, the philantropist and a fighter in the way of Allah, when he reads Qur’aan he would not be able to control his tears and he would be the first person to do good deeds. He possessed the qualities that guarantee paradise for one. He was fluent and eloquent when he spoke and he has spoken on behalf of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam on many occasion with or without the presence of the Messenger of Allah Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam. He was so loved by the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam and used to visit him in his house in the morning and afternoon and would call him: My brother, my companion. He would also praise him by saying: “What an excellent man Abu Bakr is!â€â€ It was out of the Prophet’s love for him that he married his daughter. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam likened him to the Prophets Ibrahim and ‘Eesaa in leniency. He benefited the Messenger of Allah with his wealth and life and spent his money abundantly for the upliftment of the Religion of Allah. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam said: “No body has done a favour for us except that we have compensated him save Abu Bakr for, he has done us favours that, it is only Allah who can recompense him for it on the Day of Judgement.†(At-Tirmidhi). The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam also said: “O Abu Bakr! You are the first person to enter Paradise from my nation.†(Abu Dawood).

 

Abu Bakr was also the most beloved among the companions. The companions loved him and revered him. ‘Umar said: “A night and a day of Abu Bakr is -by Allah- better than 'Umar and the household of 'Umar.†Ibn 'Umar also said: “We, during the time of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam did not consider anybody equal with Abu Bakr.†(Al-Bukhari).

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Dear Brothers in faith! These are some of the virtues of Abu Bakr, may Allah pleased with him and please him. Therefore, give this meritorious companion of the Messenger of Allah his due in respect, love and position. The Almighty says: “Among the believers are men who have been true to their covenant with Allah (i.e. they have gone out for Jihad (holy fighting), and showed not their back to the disbelievers); of them some have fulfilled their obligations (i.e. have been martyred;) and some of them are still waiting, but they have never changed (i.e. they never proved treacherous to their covenant which they conclude with Allah) in the least.†(Al-Ahzaab 33:23).

 

Fellow Muslims! There is another fact that should well understood. The later generations of this Ummah will never succeed unless with what made the earlier generations succeeded. The companions of the Messenger of Allah are the best of all men after the Messenger of Allah himself. Therefore, knowing their ways of live, their characters and manners illuminate the way for a believer who wishes to live according to the way the Prophet did.

 

Brothers in faith! Emulate these people, be steadfast on their path and always be truthful in your sayings and deeds, you will be among the truthfuls before Allah. Also spend of your wealth seeking the pleasure of your Lord, you will be forgiven your sins; do good to people, grief and calamity will removed from you; be patient over persecution in the way of Allah for, that is the way of the righteous people and restrict yourselves to Halaal earings only, your money will be blessed. Endeavor also to learn knowledge and submit the whole of your life to Allah, you will have happiness. Engage in a lot of prayers, fasting feeding the poor, visiting the sick and attending funerals, you will earn the reward thereof in Paradise. Revere and honour the Companions of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam. For your honouring of them means your love for your Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam. All the above are the characters of the truthful Muslims, if you can have that, you will be among them.

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