By Muhammad bin Ibrahim bin `Abdullah Al-Tuwayjiri
What does it mean to believe in Allah?
Belief (iman) in Allah consists of four matters:
The First: Belief in the Existence of Allah
– Allah created all of mankind to have belief in their Creator, as He says:
So direct your face toward the religion, inclining to truth. (Adhere to) the disposition of Allah upon which He has created all people. No change should there be in the creation of Allah. That is the correct religion, but most of the people do not know. (Ar-Rum 30:30)
Human intellect has proven that this universe has a Creator, for indeed all of creation, from its beginning and afterwards, must have a Creator that brought it into existence. A part of creation cannot bring itself into existence by itself, nor can it be created by chance. This leads one to realize that there is a Creator, and He is Allah, the Lord of the Worlds, as He says:
Or were they created by nothing, or were they the creators (of themselves)? Or did they create the heavens and the earth? Rather, they are not certain. (At-Tur 52:35-36)
– One’s senses also prove the existence of Allah, for we witness the alternating of the day and night, provision for every human and animal, and the management of the affairs of all creation; all of which prove His existence by clear-cut evidences:
Allah alternates the night and the day. Indeed, in that is a lesson for those who have vision. (An-Nur 24:44)
And Allah has supported His messengers and prophets by sending them with signs and miracles that their people either saw or heard.
These are affairs that are beyond human capacity and Allah used them to bestow victory on His messengers and aid them by them. This is clear-cut evidence for the existence of a Sender, who is none other than Allah. For example, Allah made the fire cold and safe for Ibrahim split the sea for Musa, brought the dead back to life for ʿIsa and split the moon for Muhammad ((peace be upon them all). So there is no doubt of His existence:
Their messengers said, ‘Can there be doubt about Allah, Creator of the heavens and earth? He invites you that He may forgive you of your sins.’ (Ibrahim 14:10)
How many has Allah answered from those who call upon Him? How many has He given to those who asked of Him? How many has He relieved from anguish? This, without a doubt, proves His existence, knowledge and ability.
1– Allah says:
(Remember) when you asked help of your Lord, and He answered you, ‘Indeed, I will reinforce you with a thousand from the angels, following one another.’ (Al-Anfal 8:9)
2– And Allah says:
And (mention) Ayyub, when he called on his Lord, ‘Indeed, adversity has touched me, and you are the Most Merciful of the merciful.’ So We responded to him and removed what afflicted him of adversity. And We gave him back his family and the like thereof with them, as mercy from Us and a reminder for the worshippers (of Allah). (Al-Anbiya’ 21:83-84)
– Legislation also proves the existence of Allah, for the great and just rulings that comprise of what benefits the creation, and which He has revealed to His prophets and messengers in His books; is evidence that these rulings are from a Wise, Omnipotent Lord, that knows what is beneficial for His slaves.
The Second: Belief that Allah Alone Is the Lord, without Any Partners
The Lord who deserved to be worshipped is the King within Whose Hand is the sovereignty. All affairs and creation belong to Him.
So there is no Creator or Sovereign except Allah, and indeed all affairs belong to Him alone, the creation is His creation, the sovereignty is His sovereignty and the command is His command. He is the All Mighty and the Most Merciful, the Self-Sufficient and the Praiseworthy, the All Knowing and the All Powerful. He showers His mercy upon those who seek His mercy, forgives those who seek His forgiveness, gives when asked, answers when called upon and does whatever He wills. He is the Ever Living and the Sustainer who is never overtaken by drowsiness or sleep. To Him alone belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth, to Him belongs everything in the heavens and the earth, to Him belong the treasures of the heavens and the earth, to Him belong the unseen matters of the heavens and the earth and to Him belong the troops of the heavens and the earth.
1– Allah says:
Indeed, your Lord is Allah, who created the heavens and earth in six days and then established Himself above the Throne. He covers the night with the day, [another night] chasing it rapidly; and [He created] the sun, the moon, and the stars, subjected by His command. Unquestionably, His is the creation and the command; blessed is Allah, Lord of the worlds. (Al-A`raf 7:54)
2– And Allah says:
To Allah belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth and whatever is within them. And He is over all things competent. (Al-Ma’idah 5:120)
Thus, we know and have full conviction that Allah is the Lord who created all the creatures, brought about all forms of creation, fashioned all that exists and created the heavens and the earth:
That is Allah, your Lord, so worship Him. Then will you not remember? (Yunus 10:3)
He created the sun and the moon, the day and the night, water and plants, man and animal, soil, the mountains, and the seas:
He to whom belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth, and who has not taken a son and has not had a partner in dominion, and has created each thing and determined it with (precise) determination. (Al-Furqan 25:2)
– Allah has created everything with his Own ability. He does not have any adviser, consultant or assistant. Glory be to Him, the Lord, the One, the Dominant. He rose above the throne by His mercy, holds the heavens and the earth by His ability, flattened the earth by His will, created all things by His will and subdued His slaves by His strength.
He is the Lord of the east and the west. There is no deity worthy of worship except Him, the Ever Living, the Sustainer:
Allah is the Creator of all things, and He is the Disposer of affairs over all things. To Him belong the keys of the heavens and the earth. And they who disbelieve in the verses of Allah- it is they who are the losers. (Az-Zumar 39:62)
We also know and have full conviction that Allah is the Lord and is Able to do all things, encompassing all matters, Owner of everything, Knowledgeable of all things and Dominant over everything. Heads are humbled due to His greatness, voices are stilled in fear of Him, the mighty are humbled due to His might. Vision perceives Him not, but He perceives all vision. He is the Subtle One and the Most Aware. He does what He pleases and decrees whatever He wills:
His command is only when He intends a thing that He says to it, ‘Be,’ and it is. (Ya-Sin 36:82)
– He knows of all matters in the heavens and upon earth, and knows of the world of the unseen and the witnessed. He is the Most Great, the Most Exalted. He knows the weight of mountains, the measure of the seas, the number of drops from rainfall, the number of leaves on trees, the number of grains of sand, what the darkness conceals, and what the night time covers in darkness and what the daytime shines forth upon:
And with Him are the keys of the unseen; none knows them except Him. And He knows what is on the land and in the sea. Not a leaf falls but that He knows it. And no grain is there within the darknesses of the earth and no moist or dry thing but that it is (written) in a clear record. (Al-An`am 6:59)
– We further know and have full conviction that every day Allah is bringing about a matter. Nothing is hidden from Him in the heavens and earth. He controls all affairs, sends the winds, brings forth the rain and gives life to the earth after its lifelessness. He honors whom He wills and He degrades whom He wills. He gives life and causes death. He gives and restrains from giving, and raises the ranks of some and brings down others:
Say, ‘O Allah, Owner of Sovereignty, You give sovereignty to whom You will and You take sovereignty away from whom You will. You honor whom You will and You humble whom You will. In Your hand is all good. Indeed, You are over all things competent. You cause the night to enter the day, and You cause the day to enter the night; and You bring the living out of the dead, and You bring the dead out of the living. And You give provision to whom You will without account.’ (Aal `Imran 3:26-27)
– We also know and have full conviction that the treasures of all things are with Allah alone, and that the treasures within the heavens and the earth all belong to Allah alone. In fact, the treasures of everything in existence belong to Allah: The treasures of water, plants, air, minerals, health, safety, blessings, punishment, mercy, guidance, strength and honor; all of these and others are with Allah and in His Hand alone:
And there is not a thing but that with Us are its treasures, and We do not send it down except according to a known measure. (Al-Hijr 15:21)
Thus, if we know that and have full conviction of Allah’s ability, greatness, strength, grandeur, sovereignty, treasures, mercy and Oneness; the hearts would draw nearer to Him, the chests would open to His worship, the limbs would submit to His obedience, and the tongues would be in constant remembrance of Him through reverence, glorification, exaltation and praise.
So do not ask of anyone except Him, do not beseech anyone except Him, do not truly rely upon anyone other than Him, do not fear anyone but Him and do not worship anything other than Him:
That is Allah, your Lord; there is no deity except Him, the Creator of all things, so worship Him. And He is Disposer of all things. (Al-An`am 6:102)
To be continued….
The article is an excerpt from the author’s book “Summarized Islamic Fiqh In Light of the Qur’an and Sunnah”, translated by Kamil Ahmad & Jawad Beg