Means of Steadfastness: Standing Firm in Islam [4/4]


Continued from the previous article…

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Means of Steadfastness in Islam [continued]

Situations where steadfastness is required

There are many such situations, which need to be discussed in detail, but we can only list them in brief here.

Times of Trial and Tribulation

Trials and tribulations can cause the heart to change. Whether they are the trials of ease or of hardship, only those who have understanding and whose hearts are filled with faith can remain steadfast.

Among the different types of trials are:

1. The trial of wealth. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning),

  “And of them are some who made a covenant with Allah (saying): ‘If He bestowed on us of His Bounty, we will verily give charity and will be certainly among those who are righteous. Then when He gave them of His Bounty, they became niggardly, and turned away, averse.” [al- Tawbah 9:75-76]

2. The trial of worldly power and authority. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning),

  “And keep yourself patiently with those who call on their Lord morning and afternoon, seeking His Face, and let not your eyes overlook them, desiring the pomp and glitter of the life of the world; and obey not him whose heart We have made heedless of Our Remembrance, one who follows his own lusts and whose affair (deeds) has been lost.” [al-Kahf 18:28]

Concerning the danger of these two types of trial, the Prophet ﷺ said,

 “ Two hungry wolves sent against the sheep could not do more damage to them than the damage done by a man’s eagerness for wealth and power to his religion. [Reported by Imaam Ahmad in al-Musnad, 3/460; see also Saheeh al-Jaami’, 5496]

The meaning is that a man’s desire for wealth and power will do more damage to his religion than the damage done by two hungry wolves to a flock of sheep.

3. The trial of one’s wife. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning),

  “… Verily, among your wives and your children there are enemies for you (i.e., may stop you from the obedience of Allah), therefore beware of them!…” [al-Taghaabun 64:14]

4. The trial of children. The Prophet ﷺ said,

 “ Children are the cause of cowardice, the cause of stinginess and the cause of grief. [Reported by Abu Ya’laa, 2/305 – it also has corroborating reports. See also Saheeh al-Jaami’, 7037]

5. The trial of persecution, oppression and injustice. Allah has described this in the most evocative terms in the Qur’an (interpretation of the meaning),

  “Cursed were the people of the ditch, fire supplied (abdunantly) with fuel, when they sat by it (the fire), and they witnessed what they were doing against the believers (i.e., burning them). They had nothing against them, except that they believed in Allah, the All-Mighty, Worthy of all Praise! To Whom belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth! And Allah is Witness over everything.” [al-Burooj 85:4-9]

Al-Bukhaari reported from Khabbaab (may Allah be pleased with him) who said,

“We complained to the Messenger of Allah ﷺ when he was reclining on his cloak in the shade of the Ka’bah. He ﷺ said, “Among the people who came before you, there was a man who was taken and put into a hole dug for him in the earth, then a saw was put on his head and he was cut into two pieces, and an iron comb was used to tear the flesh from his bones, but this still did not turn him away from his religion.” [Reported by al-Bukhaari, see Fath al-Baari, 12/315]

6. The trial of the Dajjaal (“antichrist”), which is the greatest trial in this world. The Prophet ﷺ said,

 “ O people, there has never been any fitnah (trial) on the face of the earth since Allah created Adam greater than the trial of the Dajjaal… O slaves of Allah, O people, stand firm, for I shall describe him to you in a way that no Prophet before me has described him… [Reported by Ibn Maajah, 2/1359; see Saheeh al-Jaami’, 7752]


With regard to the heart and the trials it is subjected to, the Prophet ﷺ said,

 “ Hearts are exposed to trials one after the other. Any heart that succumbs to them is stained with a black spot, and any heart that resists them becomes pure white, until all hearts of one of these two types. The white heart is intensely white and will not be harmed by any trial so long as heaven and earth remain, and the black heart is intensely black and does not recognize good or forbid evil, except what suits its own whims and desires. [Reported by Imaam Ahmad, 5/386, and by Muslim, 1/128 – this version narrated by Muslim]

Steadfast adherence to the mannhaj (methodology of the Qur’an and Sunnah)

  “Among the believers are men who have been true to their covenant with Allah [i.e., they have gone out for jihaad (holy fighting), and showed not their backs 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 concluded with Allah] in the least.” [al-Ahzaab 33:23 – in terpretation of the meaning]

Their principles are dearer to them than their own souls, and their determination knows no compromise.

Steadfastness at the Time of Death

The kuffaar and immoral people are denied steadfastness at the most difficult and most stressful times, and they cannot utter the Shahaadah at the time of death – which is one of the signs of a bad end. A man was told when he was dying to say Laa ilaaha ill- Allah, and he started to move his head from right to left, refusing to say it. Another started to say, “This is an excellent piece, this is a bargain”, when he was dying. A third began to mention the names of various chess pieces, and a fourth started to hum the tunes of songs, or to mention the name of someone he loved. This is because those things distracted them from remembering Allah in this world.

You may see some of these people with blackened faces, or a foul odour, or turning away from the qiblah – laa hawla wa laa quwwata ilia billaah (there is no strength or power except with Allah).

But the people of righteousness, who follow the Sunnah, are helped by Allah to stand firm at the time of death, and so they utter the Shahaadatayn. You may see some of them with a cheerful face and a pleasant scent, looking as if they are hearing good news when their souls are taken from their bodies.

This is an example of one of those whom Allah helped to be steadfast at the time of death. His name was Abu Zar’ah al-Raazi, one of the imaams of the scholars of hadeeth,

  “Abu Ja’far Muhammad ibn ‘Ali Warraaq Abu Zar’ah said: we were with Abu Zar’ah in Shahraan, one of the villages of al-Riyy, when he started dying, and Abu Haatim, Ibn Waarah, al-Mundhir ibn Shaadhaan and others were with him. They remembered the hadeeth, ‘Tell those who are dying to say Laa ilaaha ill- Allah,’ but they felt too shy to tell Abu Zar’ah to say it. They said, ‘Let us mention the hadeeth.’ Ibn Waarah said: ‘Abu ‘Aasim told us, ‘Abd al-Hameed ibn Ja’far told us, from Saalih,’ and he started to say ‘Ibn Abi. . .’ but he could not go any further. Then Abu Haatim said, ‘Bundaar told us Abu ‘Aasim told us, from ‘Abd al-Hameed ibn Ja’far, from Saalih…’ but he could not go any further, and the rest remained silent. Then Abu Zar’ah said, whilst he was dying, he opened his eyes and said, ‘Bundaar told us, Abu ‘Aasim told us, ‘Abd al-Hameed told us, from Saalih ibn Abi Ghareeb from Katheer ibn Murrah from Mu’aadh ibn Jabal who said, The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said, “Whoever says as his last words La ilaaha ill-Allah, will enter Paradise.’” Then his soul departed, may Allah have mercy on him.” [Siyar A’laam al-Nubala ’, 13/76-85]

These are the ones of whom Allah says (interpretation of the meaning),

  “Verily, those who say: ‘Our Lord is Allah (Alone), ’ and then they stood straight (followed Islam truly), on them the angels wil, descend (at the time of their death) (saying), ‘Fear not, nor grieve! But receive the glad tidings of Paradise which you have been promised!’” [Fussilat 41:30]

O Allah, make us among them. O Allah, we ask you to make us adhere to Islam with determination and wisdom. And the end of our prayer is: praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds.

(NOTE: If you want to build a strong and powerful relationship with Allah, check out Islamia TV, where you can watch Islamic speakers from across the globe deliver inspiring and motivational courses. Learn more at


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