The Three Fundamental Principles

Author: Imaam Muhammad Ibn Abdul-Wahhaab

Source: Thaalaathatul-Usool

Published: Wednesday 26th October, 2005

The Third Principle

Knowledge of your Prophet Muhammad (sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam), and he was: Muhammad ibn 'Abdullaah ibn 'Abdul-Muttalib ibn Haashim; and Haashim was from (the tribe of) Quraysh; Quraysh were from the Arabs; and the Arabs have descended from Ismaa'eel, the son of Ibraaheem - the chosen beloved (khaleel) - may the most excellent blessings and peace be upon him and upon our Prophet. He lived for sixty-three years: forty years before prophethood, and twenty-three years as a prophet and a messenger. He was sent as a prophet with 'iqra' [i.e. the beginning of Soorah al-'Alaq], ans as a messenger with [Soorah] Muddaththir. His land was Makkah and he performed hijrah (prescribed migration) to al-Madeenah. Allaah sent him to warn against shirk and to call to tawheed.

The proof is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"O you (Muhammad sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam) wrapped in garments! Arise and warn your people; and venerate and worship your Lord, and purify yourself, your garments and your deeds; and shun the idols; and do not give anything in order to receive something more in return; and patiently persevere for the sake of your Lord in the face of any harm you encounter." [Soorah al-Muddaththir (74):1-7]

The meaning of "Arise and warn your people" is that he was to warn against shirk and to call to tawheed. "Venerate and worship your Lord" means honour and venerate Him with tawheed. "Purify yourself, your garments, and your deeds" means purify your actions from any shirk. "Shun the idols", ar-rujz means the idols, and hajr of them means shunning them, and freeing and disassociating oneself from them and their people.

He carried out this duty for ten years, calling to tawheed, and after ten years he was taken up through the heavens [i.e. the mi'raaj]; and the five Prayers were obligated upon him, and he prayed in Makkah for three years, and then he was commanded to perform hijrah (prescribed migration) to al-Madeenah.

Hijrah is migrating from the land of shirk to the land of Islaam. Hijrah from the land of shirk to the land of Islaam is an obligation upon this ummah and it continues until the Last Hour, and the proof is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"As for those whose souls the angels take in a state of having earned Allaah's Anger; then the angels will say to them: 'In what condition were you regarding your Religion?' They will say: 'We were weakened by the great numbers and strength of the people of shirk in our land who prevented us from eemaan and from following the Messenger.' They will reply: 'Was not Allaah's earth spacious so that you could leave your land and homes where the people of shirk dominate and go to a land where you could worship Allaah alone and follow His Prophet?!' So these people will find their abode in Hell, and what an evil destination that is. Except for the weak ones from the men, women and children who were unable to migrate or find a way to do so. As for such, it may be that Allaah will pardon them, and Allaah is ever One who pardons and forgives the sins of His servants." [Soorah an-Nisaa' (4):97-99]

Also the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"O My servants who believe in Me and My Messenger Muhammad (sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam), indeed My earth is spacious, so flee away from whoever prevents you from obedience to Me, and make your worship and obedience purely and sincerely for Me, and do not obey anyone in disobedience to Me." [Soorah al-'Ankaboot (29):56]

Al-Baghawee, rahimahullaah, said:

"This Aayah was sent down with regard to the Muslims who were in Makkah who did not migrate; Allaah addressed them with the title of eemaan." [1]

The proof for the hijrah found in the sunnah is his (sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam) saying:

"Hijrah will not be discontinued until repentance is discontinued, and repentance will not be discontinued until the sun rises from its place of setting."[/i] [2]

So when he (sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam) settled in al-Madeenah he ordered the rest of the prescribed duties of Islaam, such as: the zakaat, the Prayer, the hajj, jihaad, the adhaan, and commanding good and forbidding evil, and the rest of the prescribed duties of Islaam. He spent ten yeats establishing that, after which he passed away, may Allaah extol and send blessings of peace upon him and his Religion remains, and this is his Religion: There is no god except that he guided this ummah to it, and no evil except that he warned them against it. So the good that he called them to was at-tawheed, and all that Allaah loves and is pleased with; and the evil that he warned against was ash-shirk and all that Allaah hates and rejects. Allaah sent him as a Messenger to all of the people, and Allaah made it obligatory upon all of the jinn and mankind to obey him. The proof is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"Say, O Muhammad, to all of the people: 'I am the Messenger of Allaah to you all." [Soorah al-A'raaf (7):158]

Through him Allaah completed the Religion, and the proof is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"This day have I completed your Religion for you, and perfected My blessings upon you, and am pleased with Islaam as your Religion." [Soorah al-Maa'idah (5):3]

The proof that he (sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam) died is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"O Muhammad (sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam), you will die soon, and your people - those who deny you and those who believe will die. Then on the Day of Resurrection you will all dispute before your Lord until everyone oppressed receives their rights from the oppressor; and Judgement is established between them in truth." [Soorah az-Zumar (39):30-31]

After death the people will be resurrected, and the proof is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"From the earth We created you, O mankind, and to it We shall return you after death, and from it We shall raise you to life yet again." [Soorah Taa Haa (20):55]

Also the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"And Allaah created you from the dust of the earth, then He will cause you to return to being dust within the earth, then Hs will bring you forth and restore you to life." [Soorah Nooh (71):17-18]

After the Resurrection the people will be brought to account and will be rewarded or punished for their actions. The proof is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"That He may requite those who did evil and disobeyed Him, and punish them in the Fire for what they did; and that He may reward those who did good and were obedient to Him, with what is best (Paradise). [Soorah an-Najm (53):3]

Futhermore, whoever denies the Resurrection is an unbeliever, and the proof is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"The unbelievers claim that Allaah will not resurrect them after death. Say to them, O Muhammad, 'By my Lord you will certainly be resurrected from your graves, and then you will be informed of the deeds which you did in the world. That is easy for Allaah.'" [Soorah at-Taghaabun (64):7]

Allaah sent all of the messengers as bringers of good tidings and as warners, and the proof is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"Messengers who were sent with the good news of Allaah's reward for those who obey Allaah and believe in His messengers, and as warner's of Allaah's punishment for those who disobey Allaah and diebelieve in His messenger: so that those who disbelieve in Allaah and worship others besides Him may have no excuse to avoid punishment after the sending of the messengers." [Soorah an-Nisaa' (4):165]

The first of them was Nooh, alayhis-salaam, and the last of them was Muhammad (sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam); and the proof that the first of them was Nooh, alayhis-salaam, is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"We have sent you, O Muhammad, as a Messenger with Revelation, just as We sent Revelation to Nooh and the Messengers after him." [Soorah an-Nisaa' (4):163]

Allaah sent a Messenger to every nation, from Nooh until Muhammad, commanding them to worship Allaah alone, and forbidding them from the worship of at-taaghoot [i.e. everything that is worshipped besides Allaah], and the proof is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"We sent a Messenger to every nation ordering them that they should worship Allaah alone, obey Him and make their worship purely for Him, and they should shun everything worshipped besides Allaah." [Soorah an-Nahl (16):36]

Allaah made it obligatory upon all of the servants to reject and disbelieve in at-taaghoot, and to have eemaan in Allaah. Ibnul-Qayyim, rahimahullaah, said:

"At-taaghoot is anyone regarding whom the servant goes beyond the due bounds, whether it is someone worshipped, obeyed or followed." [3]

The taaghoot are many, and their heads are five:

  1. Iblees - may Allaah's curse be upon him;
  2. whoever is worshipped and is pleased with that;
  3. whoever calls the people to the worship of himself;
  4. whoever claims to possess anything from the knowledge of the affairs of the hidden and unseen (al-Ghayb); and
  5. whoever judges by other than what Allaah sent down.

The proof is the Saying of Allaah, the Most High,

"No one is to be compelled to enter the Religion, true guidance has been made clear and distinct from falsehood. So whoever rejects at-taaghoot (all that is worshipped besides Allaah) - and truly believes and worships Allaah alone, then he has grasped the firmest handhold that will never break." [Soorah al-Baqarah (2):256]

And this is the meaning of laa ilaaaha illallaah (None has the right to be worshipped except Allaah).

And in the hadeeth:

"The head of the affair is al-Islaam, and its supporting pillar is the Prayer, and its highest part is jihaad in Allaah's cause. [4]

And Allaah knows best, and may Allaah extol and send blessings of peace upon Muhammad, his true followers and his Companions.


[1] According to Shaykh Muhammad Ibn Saalih al-'Uthaymeen, this quote from Imaam al-Baghawee exists only in meaning and can be found in his Tafseer.

[2] Related by Ahmad (4/99) and Abu Daawood (3/7) and ad-Daarimee (2/239). It was declared authentic by Shaykh al-Albaanee in Saheeh ul-Jaami' us-Sagheer (no. 7346).

[3] A'alaamul Muwaqi'een (1/53).

[4] Related by at-Tirmidhee (7/281) and Ibn Maajah (2/1314). It was authenticated by Shaykh al-Albaanee in Saheeh Sunan at-Tirmidhee (no. 2110).


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