In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
The Muslim's Belief
Sheikh Muhammad as-Saleh Al-'Uthaimin rahimahullaah. Translated by Dr. Maneh Al-Johani.
Table of Contents
Preface of Shaykh Abd al Aziz Ibn
Chapter I: Our Creed
Belief in Allah's Lordship, Oneness, and
Attributes Allah's Will Universal and Legal - More of Allah's Attributes -
Describing Allah by His Revelation.
Chapter II: The Qur'an and Sunnah
Sources of His Attributes - Free
Chapter III: Angels
Belief - Angel's Functions.
Chapter IV: Allah's Books
Belief - Books Known - The Qur'an Is
Protected from Change - Previous Scriptures Changed.
Chapter V: Messengers
Belief - The First and Last Messengers - The
Best Messengers - Messengers are Human Beings - Islam The Universal and Final
Message - Rightly Guided Caliphs ~ The Prophet's Companions
Chapter VI: The Day of Judgment
Belief - The Resurrection - The
Records and Scales - The Prophet's Intercession - The Prophet's Pool - The
Straight Path - Paradise and Hell - What Happens in the Grave
Chapter VII: Fate and the Divine Decree
Belief - Levels of Belief -
Man's Free Will - No Excuse for Sinners - Evil Not Attributable to Allah
Chapter VIII: Benefits
Virtues of Belief in Allah - Virtues of
Belief in Angels - Virtues of Belief in Books - Virtues of Belief in Messengers
- Virtues of Belief in Day of Judgment Virtues of Belief in Fate
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Preface of Shaykh Abd al Aziz Ibn Baz
Praise belongs to Allah alone; peace and blessing on the last Prophet, his
family and his Companions.
I was introduced to the valuable and concise treatise on the Muslim's belief
prepared by our brother, the great scholar Shaikh Muhammad As-Saleh al-Uthaimin.
I listened to it all and found that it covers the creed of the Sunnites and the
mainstream majority of the Muslims in the area of the oneness of Allah, His
attributes, the belief in the angels, the books and the messengers, the Day of
Judgment, and in the belief in fate and the divine decree. He succeeded in
collecting what the seeker of knowledge and every Muslim needs for his belief in
Allah, His angels, His scriptures, His messengers, the Day of Judgment, and
fate. He included in his treatise useful information related to the Muslim's
beliefs that are not readily available in many of the books written on these
topics. May Allah reward the author, increase him in knowledge and guidance, and
make this book and his other books most useful. May Allah, the Hearer and the
Close, bless us and him and all our brothers and make us among those who are
guiding and rightly guided to call people to Allah with sure knowledge.
Dictated by 'Abd al-Aziz ibn Baz, may Allah forgive him and shower peace and
blessing on our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his Companions.
I found this treatise of the Muslim's creed a concise and useful presentation
of a very important topic. The need for this treatise, especially among
non-Arabic speaking readers, cannot be overestimated. Therefore, I decided to
translate it and make it accessible to English readers.
I would like to draw the attention of the readers to the following points:
- I gave the book the title THE MUSLIM'S BELIEF instead of the author's
Aqidatu Ahl As Sunnah wa al Jama'ah, which may be translated as The Creed of the
People of the Sunnah and Majority. I think my preference is justified by: a) The
title I preferred is shorter; b) The two titles have almost the same meaning; c)
The original title contains some technical terms that are not only difficult to
translate, but also difficult to understand by many readers; and d) The original
title may antagonize some readers who are misinformed about the true
designations of the words in the original title.
- I provided, in parentheses after every Qur'anic verse, the numbers of
chapters and verses quoted by the author without giving their proper reference.
This I deemed useful for readers who do not know the Qur'an by heart and who
would like to check these verses.
- Because the author, in most cases, quotes or paraphrases some of the
prophetic traditions without indicating them to the readers, I tried, whenever I
could recognize these traditions, to put them in quotations and to cite in
parentheses the prophetic collections in which they are reported. In most cases,
I limited myself to the collections of Bukhari and Muslim whenever the saying is
quoted from them. If it is not in these two collections, I mention one or two of
the other collections that contain the quoted saying.
- I provided the arrangement of the text into chapters and headlines for ease
of reading and understanding. I also provided a table of contents for ease of
- In translating the Qur'anic verses quoted in this treatise, I did not
follow any specific translation of the Qur'an. I benefited from more than one,
but followed my own preference.
It is my sincere desire and hope that this book would be of great help to
those who consult it. Please include in your prayer all those who contributed to
its present shape.
Dr. Maneh Hammad al-Johani
Praise be to the Lord of the universe who gives the best reward to the
God-fearing and the great loss to the transgressor. I bear witness that there is
no God but Allah; He has no partner and possesses real sovereignty. I bear
witness that Muhammad is His servant and messenger; the seal of the prophets and
the leader of the God-fearing. May Allah bless him, his family, his Companions,
and those who follow them till the Day of Judgment.
Allah has sent His messenger Muhammad, peace be upon him, with the real
guidance and the true religion as a mercy to mankind, as a model for those who
do good, and as His argument against mankind. Through Muhammad and what was
revealed to him (the Qur'an and the Prophetic sayings), Allah showed mankind all
means of reforming itself and straightening its religious and mundane affairs in
sound beliefs, right conduct, fine morals, and laudable manners. The Prophet,
peace be upon him, "left his followers on a clear straight path, only the doomed
will deviate from it"(Ibn Majah and Ahmad). His followers, the Companions, their
followers, and those who followed them faithfully are the best of mankind. They
established his law, upheld his way, and held fast to it as a belief and
practice, a moral and manner. Thus "they are considered the party who are
victorious, on the straight path, unharmed by those who are against them till
the end of the world" (Bukhari and Muslim).
Thanks to Allah, we are following their footsteps and are being guided by
their examples, which are supported by the Qur'an and the prophetic traditions.
We are saying this only as an announcement of Allah's blessings and as a
clarification of what every Muslim should believe. We pray to Allah that He may
keep us and our brothers on the straight path in this life and in the hereafter.
May He give us mercy, for He is the Giver.
Due to the importance of this topic and the difference of opinions about it,
I want to explain briefly our creed-the belief of the Sunnites and the
mainstream Muslims (Ahl as-Sunnah wa al-Jama'ah). This creed is the belief in
Allah, His angels, His books, His messengers, the Day of Judgment, and fate,
whether good or bad. I pray to Allah to make this effort sincere for His sake,
in agreement with His wish, and useful for His people.
Chapter IOur creed is to believe in Allah, His
Angels, His Books, His Messengers, the Day of Judgment, and Fate whether good or
Belief in Allah's Lordship, Oneness, and Attributes:
We believe in Allah's divinity; that is he is the Lord, the Creator, the
Sovereign, and the Manager of all affairs.
We believe in Allah's god ship; that is, He is the true God and every other
so-called deity is false.
We believe in His names and attributes, that is He has the most magnificent
names and the sublime perfect attributes.
We believe in His oneness in all of this, that is, He has no associate in His
divinity, His God ship, His names, or His attributes. Allah says in the Qur'an:
"He is the Lord of the heavens and the Earth and all that is in between them, so
worship Him and be patient in His worship; do you know any equal to Him?"
We believe that He is "Allah there is no God but He, the Living, the
Everlasting. Slumber does not seize Him, neither sleep; to Him belongs all that
is in the heavens and the Earth. Who is there that shall intercede with Him
except by His permission? He knows what is before them and what is behind them,
and they do not encompass anything of His knowledge except what He wills. His
throne extends over the heavens and the Earth, the preservation of them does not
burden Him; He is the High, the Great" (2:255).
We believe that "He is Allah, there is no god but He, the Knower of the
Unseen and the Visible. He is the Most Gracious, Most Merciful. He is Allah,
there is no God but He, the King, the Holy One, the Source of Peace, the Keeper
of Faith, the Guardian, the Almighty, the Subduer, the Sublime. Glory be to
Allah above what they associate with Him. He is Allah, the Creator, the Maker,
the Shaper. His are the most beautiful Names. All that is in the heavens and the
Earth glorifies Him. He is the Almighty, the Wise" (59:22-4). ¥ We believe that
to Him belongs the Kingdom of the Heavens and the Earth: "He creates what He
pleases. He gives, to whom He wills, females, and He gives, to whom He wills,
males, or He couples them, males and females; and He makes whom He wills barren.
Surely, He is the Knowing, the Powerful" (42:49-50).
We believe that "there is nothing whatever like unto Him, He is the
All-hearing, the All-seeing. To Him belongs the keys of the Heavens and the
Earth. He enlarges and restricts provisions to whom He wills. Surely He has
knowledge of everything" (42:11-12).
We believe that "there is no creature that moves on the Earth but its
provision depends on Allah. He knows its dwelling and its resting place. All is
recorded in a clear book" (11:6).
We believe that "with Him are the keys of the unseen; none knows them but He.
He knows what is in land and sea; not a leaf falls, but He knows it. Not a grain
in the deep darkness of the Earth, not a thing green or dry but it is in a clear
Book" (6 :5 9 ).
We believe that "Allah alone has the knowledge of the Hour, sends down rain,
and knows what is in the wombs. No soul knows what it shall earn tomorrow, and
no soul knows in what land it shall die. Surely, Allah is All-knowing,
We believe that Allah speaks whatever He pleases whenever He pleases: "And
Allah spoke to Moses directly" (4:164); "And when Moses came at Our appointed
place, and his Lord spoke to him" (7:143 ); "We called to him from the right
side of the Mount (Sinai), and We brought him near in communion" (19:52).
We believe that "if the ocean became ink for the words of my Lord, the ocean
would be finished before the words of my Lord came to an end" (18:109); "And if
all the trees that are in the earth were pens, and the ocean (were ink), with
seven oceans swelling it therefore, the words of Allah would not be exhausted.
Surely, Allah is Mighty, Wise" (31 :27).
We believe that Allah's words are the most truthful in conveying information,
the most just in ruling, and the fairest in conversation. He said: "The word of
your Lord has been fulfilled in truth and justice" (6:115); "And who is more
truthful in his word than Allah?" (4:87).
We believe that the Qur'an is Allah's word. He literally spoke it to Gabriel,
who conveyed it to the Prophet, peace be upon him: "Say (O Muhammad) 'the Holy
Spirit has brought it down from your Lord in truth"' (16:102); "Truly it is the
revelation of the Lord of the world brought down upon your heart by the Faithful
Spirit so that you may be one of the warners, in a clear Arabic tongue"
We believe that Allah is well above His creatures in His Person and His
Attributes, because He says: "He is the High, the Great" (2:22); "He is Supreme
over His servants, and He is the Wise, the All-aware" (6:18 ).
We believe that He "created the Heavens and the Earth in six days, then He
settled Himself on the throne; He manages everything" (10:3). His "settling on
the throne" means that He is sitting in person on His throne in a way that is
becoming to His majesty and greatness. Nobody except He knows exactly how He is
We believe that He is with His creatures while He is still on His throne. He
knows their conditions, hears their sayings, sees their deeds, and manages their
affairs. He provides for the poor and the broken.
He gives sovereignty to whom He pleases and takes away sovereignty from whom
He pleases; He exalts whom He wills and He abases whom He wills. In His hand is
all good and He is powerful over everything. Whoever possesses these qualities
is literally with His creatures even if He is literally above them on His
throne. "There is nothing whatsoever like unto Him; He is the All-hearing, the
All-seeing" (42: 11).
We do not say, as do the Incarnationists among the Jahomites and others, that
Allah is living with His creatures on Earth. We consider whoever says this a
non-believer or one who has strayed, for he attributed to Allah that which does
not become Him of defects.
We believe in what His Messenger told us, that He descends to the near sky
before the last third of every night and says: "Who prays to Me and I will
answer his prayers? Who asks Me and I will give him? Who asks My forgiveness and
I will forgive him?" (Bukhari and Muslim).
We believe that He will come on the Day of Judgment to judge among His people
because He said: "No indeed! When the Earth is crushed to powder, and your Lord
comes down with the angels in rows after rows, and Hell is brought out that day.
On that day man will remember, but what will remembrance avail him?" (89:21-23).
We believe that he is the Doer of what He wills.
Allah's Will: Universal and Legal:
We believe that His will is of two kinds: a) Universal will, through which
His intention is carried out. It is not necessary that what is carried out is
liked by Him. This type of will means permission, as Allah said: "Had Allah
willed, they would not have fought one against the other, but Allah does
whatever He desires," (2:253) and "If Allah desires to lead you astray, He is
your Lord" (11:34), and b) Legal will, which does not necessarily entail the
execution of His desire. His will, in this case, cannot be but what He likes, as
He said: "Allah wants to forgive you" (4:27).
We believe that His universal and legal wills are part of His wisdom. Every
thing He performs in the universe or requires legally from His creatures is for
a good reason and according to His wisdom, whether we grasp it or not: "Is not
Allah the best of Judges?" (95:8); "And who is better than Allah in judgment for
a people who have firm faith" (5:50).
We believe that Allah loves His select servants and that they love Him: "Say
if you love Allah, follow me and Allah will love you" (3:31); "Allah will bring
a people whom He will love and who will love Him" (5:54); "Allah loves the
steadfast" (3:146); "And act justly, surely, Allah loves the just" (49:9); and
"Do good; Allah loves those who do good" (5:93).
We believe that Allah likes what He prescribed of good deeds and sayings and
He dislikes what He prohibited of bad deeds and sayings: "If you disbelieve,
surely Allah does not need you, yet He does not like disbelief for His servants;
if you are thankful, this pleases Him"(39:7); and "But Allah disliked their
marching forth. So He kept them back, and it was said to them: 'Stay with the
We believe that Allah is pleased with those who believe in Him and do good
deeds: "Allah is well pleased with them and they are well pleased with Him. That
is for him who fears his Lord" (98:8).
We believe that Allah is angry with those who deserve His anger among the
non-believers and others: "And those who think evil thoughts of Allah, against
them shall be the evil turn of fortune. Allah is angry with them" (48:6); " But
whoever opens his heart to disbelief, on them is Allah's wrath and they shall
have a severe punishment" (16:106).
More of Allah's Attributes: We believe that Allah has a glorious and
dignified face: "There will remain the face of your Lord, majestic and splendid"
We believe that Allah has two generous hands: "No, both His hands are wide
open; He spends how He pleases" (5:64); "They do not esteem Allah with the
esteem that is due to Him. The whole Earth will be His handful on the Day of
Resurrection, and the Heavens will be rolled up in His right hand. Glory be to
Him and exalted is He above that which they associate with Him" (39:67).
We believe that Allah possesses two real eyes, because He said: "And build
the ark under Our eyes as We reveal" (11:37). The Prophet, peace be upon him,
said: "His veil is light. Had He removed it, the sublimity of His countenance
would have burnt all that His sight reached" (Muslim and Ibn Majah). The
Sunnites unanimously have agreed that He has two eyes. This is supported by the
Prophet's saying about the Dajjal (the anti-Christ) that "he is one-eyed and
your Lord is not one-eyed" (Bukhari and Muslim).
We believe that "vision cannot perceive Him, but He perceives all vision. He
is the Incomprehensible, the All-aware" (6:103).
We believe that the believers will see their Lord on the Day of Resurrection:
"Upon that day some faces shall be radiant, gazing upon their Lord" (75:22-3).
We believe that Allah has no equal because His Attributes are perfect: "There
is nothing whatsoever like unto Him. He is the All-hearing, the All-seeing"
(42:11). ¥ We believe that "no slumber or sleep seizes Him" (2:255), because His
life is perfect and eternal.
We believe that He does not do injustice to anybody, because His fairness is
We believe that He is not unaware of his servants' deeds, because He has
perfect supervision and comprehensive knowledge.
We believe that He is capable of doing anything in the Heavens or in the
Earth, because of His perfect knowledge and power: "Indeed His command, when He
desires a thing, is only to say to it 'Be' and it is" (36: 82).
We believe that He is free from weariness and weakness, because of His
infinite power: "Surely, We created the Heavens and the Earth and all that is
between them in six days, and no weariness touched Us" (50: 38).
Describing Allah by His Revelation:
We believe in all that He assigned to Himself or what His Messenger described
Him with, of names and attributes. However, we reject two concepts: 1) To say or
believe that Allah's attributes are similar to those of his creatures; and 2) To
say or believe that Allah's attributes are like such and such.
We negate all what He negated about Himself or what His Messenger negated
about Him. We believe that negation implies the affirmation of its perfect
opposite. We do not discuss what He or His Messenger did not mention about Him.
We believe that following this approach is a must, because what Allah
affirmed or negated concerning Himself is a statement He made about Himself. He
knows Himself best. His words are most just and trustful, and people cannot know
everything about Him. What Allah's Messenger affirmed or negated about Him is a
statement that he made about Allah. Besides knowing Allah better than anyone, he
is the most truthful, sincere, and eloquent among people. Thus, in what Allah
said and what His Prophet said concerning His names and attributes is the truth,
knowledge, and clarification. Therefore, we have no excuse to reject or even
hesitate in accepting it.
THE QUR'AN AND THE SUNNAH
Sources of His Attributes:
All that we have mentioned about Allah's attributes, whether briefly or in
detail and affirmatively or negatively, is based on the book of our Lord (the
Qur'an) and the traditions of our Prophet. It also agrees with the practice of
the previous generations of Muslims and the rightly guided scholars who came
We believe it is obligatory to take the texts of the Qur'an and the prophetic
traditions conceding Allah's attributes at their face value and to interpret
them in a way that is suitable to Almighty Allah. We reject the practice of
those who twist the meanings of these texts and understand them in a way that
was not intended by Allah and His messenger.
We also reject the practice of those who make them devoid of their meanings
as conveyed by Allah and His Messenger. Finally, we reject the approach of those
who exaggerate, who gave them a physical interpretation that makes Allah similar
to some of His creatures.
Free from Contradictions:
We know for sure that what is revealed in Allah's book and in the traditions
of His Messenger is the truth. It does not contain any contradiction: "Do they
not ponder over the Qur'an? If it had been from other than Allah, surely they
would have found in it a lot of differences" (4: 82).
Contradictions in statements falsify them. It is impossible for there to be a
contradiction in any statement revealed by Allah and said by His Messenger,
peace be upon him. Whoever claims that there are contradictions in the Qur'an,
the prophetic traditions, or between the two must have wicked intentions and a
misguided heart. He should repent and quit his sin. If someone imagines that
there are some contradictions in the Qur'an, the sayings of the Prophet, or
between these two, this must be a result of his little knowledge, inadequate
understanding, or lack of deep thinking. Therefore, he should seek knowledge and
do his best to reflect upon matters until the truth is clear to him. If, after
all of these efforts, the truth is not clear to him, he should leave the whole
matter to the One who knows it and should quit his imagination. He should say,
as do those who are firmly rooted in knowledge: "We believe in it, all is from
our Lord" (3:7). He must know that there are neither contradictions nor
differences in the Qur'an, the Sunnah, or between the two.
Belief in Angels:
We believe in the existence of the angels of Allah and that they are "honored
servants. They do not speak before He does, and they act only by His command"
(21:26). Allah created them, and they worship and obey Him. Those who are in His
presence do not disdain to worship Him, nor do they weary" (21:19).
Angels are concealed from us, so we cannot see them. Allah may show them to
some of His servants. The Prophet Muhammad saw Gabriel in his real shape with
six hundred wings that covered the horizons (Bukhari and Muslim). Gabriel took
the form of a handsome human being who met Mary and engaged in conversation with
her. He came to the Prophet while he was among his Companions in the appearance
of an unknown man who did not show any trace of long travel, with very white
clothes, and very black hair. He sat facing the Prophet, his knees to the
Prophet's knees, peace be upon him, and his palms on the Prophet's thighs and
talked with the Prophet. The Prophet later told his Companions that the man they
saw was Gabriel (Bukhari and Muslim).
Angels' Functions: We believe that the angels are assigned certain functions.
Among the angels is Gabriel, who is entrusted with revelation. He brings it down
from Allah to whomever He wishes among His prophets and messengers.
Among them is Michael, who is in charge of rain and the growth of plants;
Israfil, who is in charge of blowing the horn at the time of thunder-bolting and
the resurrection; the Angel of Death, who takes away people's souls at the time
of death. Among the angels is the one who is in charge of mountains; and Malik,
the keeper of Hell.
Some angels are in charge of embryos in wombs, others are responsible for
protecting human beings, and others are busy recording men's deeds: there are
two angels for every person, "when the two angels receive (his deeds), one
sitting on the right and one on the left, not a word he utters but by him is an
observer ready" (50:18). Some other angels are in charge of questioning the dead
after he is placed in his last abode. Two angels come to him and ask him about
his Lord, his religion, and his prophet. There "Allah confirms those who believe
with the firm saying, in the present life and the hereafter, and Allah leads
astray the evildoers and Allah does what He wills" (14:27).
Some angels are in charge of the dwellers of Paradise: "The angels enter to
them from every gate, saying: 'Peace be upon you for that you were patient. How
excellent is your final home"' (13:24).
The Prophet, peace be upon him, told us that "seventy thousand angels enter
or pray in the populous house in heaven every day. They never come back to it as
long as they live" (because their turn will never come) (Bukhari and Muslim).
Belief in Allah's Books:
We believe that Allah revealed books to His messengers as proof against
mankind and a guidance for the righteous workers. They purified and taught them
wisdom by these books.
We believe that Allah sent down a book with every messenger, because He says:
"Indeed We sent down Our messengers with the clear signs, and We sent down with
them the book and the balance, so that people may uphold justice" (57:25).
Among the books that were revealed, we know:
I ) The Torah, which was revealed to Moses, peace be upon him. It is the
greatest among the Israelites' books: "Surely, We sent down the Torah, wherein
is guidance and light; by its laws the Jews have been judged by the prophets who
surrendered themselves to Allah, the rabbis and the doctors of law, because they
were entrusted the protection of Allah's book and were witnesses thereto"
2) The Gospel, which Allah revealed to Jesus, peace be upon him. It is a
confirmation of the Torah and a complement to it: "And we gave him the Gospel,
wherein is guidance and light and confirming the Torah before it, as a guidance
and an admonition to the God-fearing" (5:46); "And to make lawful to you certain
things that, before, were forbidden to you" (3:50).
3) The Psalms, which Allah gave to David, peace be upon him.
4) The Tablets of Abraham and Moses, peace be upon them.
5) The Glorious Qur'an, which was revealed to His Prophet Muhammad, the Seal
of the Prophets. It is "a guidance to the people and clear signs of guidance and
the criterion between right and wrong" (2:185). The Qur'an Is Protected from
The Qur'an is "confirming the scripture that was before it and stands as a
guardian over it." Thus, by means of the Qur'an, Allah abrogated all the
previous revealed books. Allah has also guaranteed its protection from any play
or mischievous distortion: "Indeed, We sent down the message and We will guard
it" (15:9), for the Qur'an is a proof against mankind till the Day of Judgment.
Previous Scriptures Changed:
The previous scriptures were meant for a limited period. Their use ended with
the revelation of the Qur'an, which abrogated them and exposed their distortions
and changes. That is why they were not protected from corruption. They underwent
distortion, addition, and omission: "Some of the Jews pervert words from their
meanings" (4:46); "So woe to those who write the Book with their hands, and then
say: 'This is from Allah,' that they may sell it for a little price. So woe to
them for what their hands have written, and woe to them for their earnings"
(2:79); "Say, who sent down the Book that Moses brought as a light and a
guidance to people? You put it into sheets of paper showing some of them and
concealing much" (6:91); "And there is a group among them who twist their
tongues with the Book, that you may think it is a part of the Book but it is not
part of the Book. And they say 'It is from Allah,' yet it is not from Allah, and
they tell a lie against Allah and they know it. It is not for any human being to
whom Allah has given the Book, the Wisdom and the Prophet hood to say to men
'Worship me instead of Allah"' (3:79); "People of the Book! Our Messenger has
come to you, making clear to you many things you have been concealing of the
Book and forgiving you of much. A light has come to you from Allah and a
glorious Book, with which He will guide whoever follows His pleasure in the way
of peace, and brings them forth from darkness into the light by His will"
Belief in Messengers:
We believe that Allah has sent to His people messengers who were "bringing
good tidings and warning, so that mankind might have no argument against Allah
after the Messengers. Allah is All-mighty, All-wise" (4: 165).
The First and Last Messengers:
We believe that the first among the messengers is Noah and the last is
Muhammad, peace be upon them all: "We revealed to you as We revealed to Noah and
the prophets after him" (4: 163); and "Muhammad is not the father of any of your
men, but the Messenger of Allah and the Seal of the Prophets" (33:40).
The Best Messengers:
We believe that the best among the messengers is Muhammad, then Abraham,
Moses, Noah, and Jesus, son of Mary. It is they who are meant by the following
Qur'anic verse: "And when We took a compact from the prophets, and from you, and
from Noah, and Abraham, then Moses, and Jesus, son of Mary. We took from them a
solemn compact" (33:7).
We believe that Muhammad's message, peace be upon him, includes all the
merits of the messages of those dignified messengers, because Allah says: "He
ordained for you what He enjoined on Noah and what He revealed to you and what
He enjoined on Abraham, Moses and Jesus; namely, establish this faith and be
united in it" (42:13).
Messengers Are Human Beings:
We believe that all messengers are created human beings who have none of the
divine qualities of Allah. Allah, the Exalted, said about Noah, who was the
first among them: "I do not say to you, 'I possess the treasures of Allah.' I do
not know the unseen, and I do not say 'I am an angel"' (11:31) Allah directed
Muhammad, who is the last among them, to say: "I do not say to you I possess the
treasures of Allah, nor do I know the unseen, and I do not say to you I am an
angel" (6:50); and to say that "I have no power to bring profit or hurt for
myself, but only as Allah wills" (7:188); and: "I have no power to hurt or
benefit you. Say none can protect me from Allah, nor can I find any refuge
besides Him" (72:91-2).
We believe that the messengers are among Allah's servants. He blessed them
with the message and described them as servants, in the context of praising and
honoring them. He says about Noah, the first among them: "You are the
descendants of those whom We carried with Noah, he was a truly thankful servant"
Allah said about the last among them, Muhammad, peace be upon him: "Blessed
be He who sent down the Qur'an to His servant, that he may warn mankind" (25:1).
As for some other messengers, he said: "And mention Our servants Abraham, Isaac,
and Jacob, men of might and vision" (38:45); "And remember Our servant David,
who was a mighty and penitent man" (38: 17); "And to David, We gave Solomon, he
was an excellent and penitent servant" (38:30).
Allah said about Jesus, son of Mary: "He is only a servant whom We blessed
and We made him an example to the children of Israel" (43: 59).
We believe that Allah concluded all messages with the message of Muhammad,
peace be upon him, to all people, because He said: "Say, 'O mankind, I am
Allah's Messenger to you all. To him belongs the Kingdom of the Heavens and the
Earth; there is no god but He. He ordains life and death. So believe in Allah
and His Messenger, the unlettered Prophet who believes in Allah and His words.
Follow him so that you may be rightly guided"' (7:158).
Islam: The Universal and Final Message:
We believe that the Shari'ah of the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, is
the religion of Islam, which Allah has chosen for His servants. He does not
accept any other religion from anyone, for He, the Exalted, said: "Surely, the
true religion in Allah's sight is Islam" (3:19), "Today I have perfected your
religion for you and I have completed My favor upon you, and I have chosen Islam
to be your religion" (5:3), and "Whoever desires a religion other than Islam, it
will never be accepted from Him, and in the Hereafter he will be among the
It is our opinion that whoever claims that any religion other than Islam is
acceptable, such as Judaism, Christianity and so forth, is a non believer. He
should be asked to repent.
It is also our opinion that whoever rejects the universal message of
Muhammad, peace be upon him, rejects the message of all messengers, even if he
claims that he believes and follows His Messenger. Allah, the Exalted, said:
"Noah's people rejected the Messengers" (26:105). Thus, Allah considered them as
rejecting all of the messengers despite the fact that there was no messenger
before Noah. This is also clear from the following verses: "Those who disbelieve
in Allah and His Messengers, and wish to make division between Allah and His
Messengers, and say: 'We believe in some and disbelieve in others,' wishing to
take a midway course. Those indeed are the unbelievers, and We have prepared for
the unbelievers a humiliating punishment"(4:150-51).
We believe that there is no prophet after Muhammad, Allah's Messenger, peace
be upon him. Whoever claims prophet hood after him, or believes in anyone
claiming it, is a disbeliever and one who rejects Allah, His Messenger, and the
The Rightly Guided Caliphs:
We believe that the Prophet, peace be upon him, has rightly guided successors
who carried out his Sunnah in spreading knowledge calling to Islam, and managing
the Muslims' affairs. We believe that the best among them and the most entitled
to the caliphate was Abu Bakr as Siddiq, then 'Umar Ibn al-Khattab, then 'Uthman
Ibn Affan and then 'All Ibn Abi Talib, may Allah be pleased with them all. Thus
their succession to the caliphate was according to their virtues. Allah, the
Exalted, who possesses infinite wisdom, would not appoint a ruler over the best
of generations unless he was the most superior among them and had the best claim
We believe that the inferior among those rightly guided companions can be
superior in a specific virtue to those who were better than him but that he does
not deserve absolute superiority, for the elements constituting superiority are
varied and numerous.
We believe that the Muslim Ummah is the best among nations, and Allah, the
Dignified and Exalted, has blessed it, because He said: "You are the best nation
ever brought forth for mankind, enjoining what is right and forbidding what is
wrong, and believing in Allah" The Prophet's Companions:
We believe that the best among the Muslim Ummah are the Prophet's Companions,
then their followers, and then those who followed them.
We also believe that a group of this Ummah will always remain victorious on
the right path, unharmed by those who let them down or those who oppose them,
until the Day of Judgment.
We believe that the disputes that took place among the Prophet's Companions
were the result of sincere interpretations that they worked hard to reach.
Whoever was right among them will be rewarded twice, and whoever was wrong among
them will be rewarded once and his mistake will be forgiven.
It is our opinion that we should stop talking about their mistakes and
mention what they deserve of beautiful praise. We should purify our hearts from
hatred and malice against any of them, because Allah said about them: "They are
not equal: those among you who spent and who fought before the conquest of
Makkah. Those are higher in rank than those who spent and fought afterwards. But
to all Allah has promised a great reward" (57:10). And Allah said about us: "And
those who came after them say: 'Our Lord, forgive us and our brothers who
preceded us in faith, and do not put in our hearts any malice against those who
have believed. Our Lord, You are the most Kind, Most Merciful"' (59:10).
THE DAY OF JUDGMENT
Belief in the Day of Judgment:
We believe in the Final Day, which is the Day of Judgment, when people will
be resurrected and then told to remain in the abode of enjoyment or in the abode
of severe punishment.
We believe in the resurrection, which is Allah's bringing to life all those
who have died, and when Israfil shall blow the horn for the second time: "And
the trumpet shall be blown, and all who are in the heavens and who are in the
Earth shall fall down fainting, except those that Allah shall spare. Then, it
shall be blown again and they shall rise gazing around them" (39:68). People
will arise from their graves, answering the call of the Lord of the universe.
They will be barefooted, naked, and uncircumcised: "As We started the first
creation, so We shall bring it back again. This is a promise from Us, so We
shall assuredly fulfill it" (21: 104).
The Records and Scales:
We believe in the records of deeds that will be given to people in their
right hands or behind their backs, in the left hands: "As for him who is given
his book in his right hand, he shall surely receive an easy reckoning and he
will return to his family rejoicing. But as for him who is given his book behind
his back, he shall call for destruction on himself and will burn in a blazing
fire" (84:7-12); "Every man's work We have fastened on his own neck, and on the
Day of Judgment We shall bring out for him a book which he will see spread open,
saying: 'Read your own book! Enough for you this day that your own soul should
call you to account"' (17:13-14).
We believe that scales of deeds will be set up on the Day of Judgment, and
that no soul shall be wronged: "Whoever has done an atom's weight of good shall
see it" (99:7-8); "Those whose scales are heavy, they are the successful; but
those whose scales are light, they are the ones who have lost their souls in
Hell dwelling forever. The fire will burn their faces, and there they will be
gloomy with lips displaced" (23: 102-4); and "He that does a good deed shall be
rewarded ten times the like of it, and he that does evil shall only be rewarded
the like of it, and they shall not be wronged" (6:160).
The Prophet's Intercession:
We believe in the special great intercession of the Prophet Muhammad, peace
be upon him. He will plead with Allah, after His permission and on behalf of
mankind, to judge among His servants when they suffer from worries and troubles
that they cannot bear. They will go to Adam, then to Noah, then to Abraham, then
to Moses, then to Jesus, and finally to Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him.
We believe in the intercession that concerns some believers who were to be
taken out from the fire. This mediation is granted to the Prophet Muhammad,
peace be upon him, and to others among the prophets, the believers, and the
We believe also that Allah will save from hell some of the believers without
the intercession of any one, but by His grace and mercy.
The Prophet's Pool:
We believe in the pool of the Prophet, peace be upon him, the water of which
is whiter than milk and sweeter than honey and better in fragrance than musk.
Each of its length and width is the distance of a month's travel. Its glasses
are as stars in beauty and number. The believers among the Prophet's followers
come to take from this great cistern a drink after which they will never be
The Straight Path:
We believe in the straight path (sirat) set up over hell. People pass over it
according to their deeds: the first of them as fast as lighting, then as fast as
wind, then as fast as birds, and then as fast as a running man. The Prophet will
be standing on the path, saying: "Lord, Save! Save!," as some people's deeds
will fall short. Some of them will come crawling. At both sides of the path
there are hooks designed to take whom Allah wills: some are saved but bruised;
others are thrown into hell. (Bukhari and Muslim).
We believe in all that is mentioned in the Qur'an or the prophetic sayings
concerning that day and its horrors, may Allah save us from them.
We believe in the intercession (Shafa'ah) of Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon
him, for the people of paradise to enter therein. This intercession is
exclusively limited to the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him.
Paradise and Hell:
We believe in paradise and hell. Paradise is the abode of enjoyment which
Allah, the Exalted, prepared for the righteous. No eye has ever seen, no ear has
ever heard of, and no human being has ever thought of the blessings that they
will enjoy there: "No soul knows what comfort is kept hidden for them, as a
reward for their deeds" (32:17). Hell is the abode of punishment that Allah has
prepared for the unbelievers and the evildoers. The torture and horror in it
cannot be imagined: "Surely, We have prepared for the evildoers a fire, whose
pavilion encompasses them. If they call for help, they will be helped with water
like molten copper which will scald their faces. How dreadful a drink and how
evil a resting place!" (18:29).
Both paradise and hell exist now and will never perish: "Whoever believes in
Allah and does righteousness, He will admit him to gardens beneath which rivers
flow, to dwell therein for ever. Allah had indeed made for him an excellent
provision" (65-11); "Certainly, Allah has cursed the unbelievers and prepared
for them a blazing fire to dwell therein forever, they shall find neither
protector nor helper. On the day when their faces are turned about in the fire
they shall say: 'Would that we had obeyed Allah and obeyed the Messenger!"' (33:
We confirm paradise to whom it is confirmed in the Qur'an or the prophetic
traditions either by name or description. Among those who are granted paradise
and mentioned by name are Abu Bakr, 'Umar, 'Uthman, 'All and others who were
specified by the Prophet, peace be upon him (Bukhari and Muslim). Among those
whom we confirm to enter paradise because they fit the description are the
faithful and the pious.
We likewise confirm hell to whom it is confirmed in the Qur'an and the
sayings of the Prophet, whether in name or description. Among those who are
mentioned by name to be in hell are Abu Lahab, 'Amr Ibn Luhai al-Khuza'i, and
others (Bukhari and Muslim). Confirmation of hell that is based on description
includes every unbeliever, polytheist, or hypocrite.
What Happens in the Grave:
We believe in the Trial of the Grave, which involves questioning the deceased
person in his grave about his Lord, his religion, and his prophet. There "Allah
confirms those who believe with a firm saying, in the present life and the
hereafter" (14:27). The believer will say: "Allah is my Lord, Islam is my
religion, and Muhammad is my prophet." The unbeliever or the hypocrite will say:
"I do not know. I heard the people saying something and I said it."
We believe in the comfort of the grave for the believers: "Those whose lives
the angels take in state of purity, saying 'peace be on you; enter paradise for
what you were doing' (16:32).
We believe in the punishment of the grave for the transgressing unbelievers:
"If you could only see when the evildoers are in the agonies of death and the
angels are stretching out their hands, saying, 'Give up your souls! Today you
shall be rewarded with the punishment of humiliation for what you used to say
untrue about Allah, and for scornfully rejecting His signs"' (6:93). The sayings
of the Prophet are numerous and well-known in this area. A Muslim must believe
in all that is reported in the Qur'an and the prophetic traditions concerning
the unseen matters. He should not contradict it by his worldly experience,
because the affairs of the hereafter cannot be measured by the affairs of this
life. The difference between them is very great. Allah is the source of help.
FATE AND THE DIVINE DECREE
We believe in Fate, whether good or bad, which Allah has measured and
ordained for all creatures according to His previous knowledge and as deemed
suitable by His wisdom.
Levels of Belief:
Belief in Fate has four levels: 1) Knowledge: We believe that Allah, may He
be exalted, knows everything. He knows what has happened and what will happen
and how it will happen. His knowledge is eternal. He does not acquire a new
knowledge nor does he forget what He knows.
2) Recording: We believe that Allah has recorded in the secured tablet (al
Lowh al Mahfuz) whatever is going to happen until the Day of Judgment: "Did you
not know that Allah knows all that is in heaven and Earth? Surely that is in a
book. Surely that for Allah is an easy matter" (22:70).
3) Will: We believe that Allah has willed everything in heaven and Earth.
Nothing happens except by His will. Whatever He wills will take place, and
whatever He does not will not take place.
4) Creation: We believe that "Allah is the Creator of all things; He is the
Guardian over all things, and to Him belong the keys of the heavens and the
Earth" (39:62-3). This level includes whatever Allah Himself does and whatever
His creatures do. Thus each saying, deed, or omission of the people is known to
Allah, Who has recorded, willed, and created them: "To those among you who will
to be upright. But you shall not will except as Allah wills, the Lord of the
Worlds" (81:2829); "And had Allah willed they would not have fought one against
the other; but Allah does whatever He desires" (2:253); "Had Allah willed, they
would not have done so, but leave them alone and their false inventions"
(6:137); and "And Allah created you and what you do" (37:96). Man's Free Will:
We believe, however, that Allah has granted man a power and a free will by
which he performs his actions. That man's deeds are done by his power and free
will can be proven by the following points:
1) Allah says: "So approach your fields (wives) when and how you will"
(2:223); and "Had they desired to go forth, they would have made some
preparation for it" (9:46). In these verses, Allah affirmed for man "a going
forth" by his will and "a preparation" by his desire.
2) Directing man to do or not to do. If man has no free will and power, these
directions mean that Allah is asking man to do that which he cannot do. This
proposition is rejected by Allah's wisdom, mercy and truthful statement: "Allah
does not charge a soul beyond its capacity" (2:286).
3) Praising the virtuous for his deeds and blaming the evildoer for his
actions and rewarding each of them with what he deserves. If the action is not
done by the individual's free will, then praising the virtuous is a joke and
punishing the evildoer is an injustice, and Allah is, of course, far from joking
and being unjust.
4) Allah has sent messengers who are "bearing good tidings, and warning, so
that mankind might have no argument against Allah after the messengers" (4:165).
If the individual's action is not performed by his free will, his argument is
not invalidated by the sending of messengers.
5) Every doer of actions feels that he does or does not do a thing without
any coercion. He stands up and sits, comes in and goes out, travels and stays by
his own free will without feeling anybody forcing him to be any of these
actions. In fact, he clearly distinguishes between doing something of his own
free will and someone else forcing him to do that action. The Islamic law also
wisely distinguishes between these states of affairs. It does not punish a
wrongdoer for an action done under compulsion.
No Excuse for Sinners:
We believe that the sinner has no excuse in Allah's divine decree, because he
commits his sin by his free will, without knowing that Allah has decreed for
him, for no one knows Allah's decree before it takes place: "No soul knows what
it will earn tomorrow" (31:34). How can it be possible, then, to present an
excuse that is not known to the person who is advancing it when he commits his
offense? Allah invalidated this type of argument by saying: "The idolaters will
say 'Had Allah willed, we would not have been idolaters, neither our fathers,
nor would we have forbidden anything.' So did the people before them cry lies
until they tasted our might. Say: 'Have you any proofs that you can show us? You
follow nothing but assumption, and you are Lying"' (6:148). We say to the sinner
who is using divine decree as an excuse: 'Why did you not perform deeds of
obedience, assuming that Allah has decreed them upon you, since you did not know
the difference between good deeds and sins? That is why, when Prophet Muhammad
told his Companions that everyone's position in paradise or hell has been
assigned, they said: 'Should not we rely on this and stop working?' He said:
'No, work and everyone will be directed to what he is created for"' (Bukhari and
We say to the sinner who is trying to find an excuse in the divine decree:
"Suppose you want to travel to Makkah. There are two roads that may take you
there. You are told by a truthful person that one of these roads is dangerous
and difficult, the other is easy and safe. You will take the second one. You
will not take the first road and say it is decreed upon me. If you did, people
would consider you crazy."
We may also say to him: "If you are offered two jobs, one of which has a
higher salary, you will certainly take the one with the higher salary. Why do
you choose what is lower in the hereafter and use the divine decree as an
We may further say to him: "We see you when you are afflicted with a disease,
you knock at every physician's door looking for treatment and bearing whatever
pain that may result from surgical operations and the bitterness of medicine.
Why do not you do the same when your heart is spiritually sick with sins?"
Evil Not Attributed to Allah:
We believe that evil should not be attributed to Allah, due to His perfect
mercy and wisdom. The Prophet said: "And evil is not attributable to You"
(Muslim). Thus Allah's decree by itself has no evil whatsoever, because it is
coming from mercy and wisdom. Evil may, however, result from some of His
decrees, because the Prophet said in the supplication for gunut which he taught
to al-Hasan: "And protect us from the evil of what You decreed" (Tirmidhi and
others). Here, the Prophet attributed evil to what He decreed. Despite this,
evil in His decree is not pure evil. It is rather evil in one respect and good
in another, or it is evil in one case and good in another. Thus corruption in
the land resulting from drought, disease, poverty, and fear is evil, but it is
good in another respect. Allah, the Exalted said: "Corruption has appeared on
the land and sea for what men's hands have earned. Allah has ordained this for
men, so that they may taste some of what they have done, in order that they may
turn back (from evil)" (30:41). Cutting off the thief's hand or stoning the
adulterer is an evil thing for the thief and the adulterer, but it is good for
them in one respect, because it is a purification for them so that the
punishment of this life and the hereafter are not combined for them. These
punishments are good in another respect: their application protects property,
honor, and relationships.
This sublime belief, which includes those great principles, bears numerous
and useful types of fruits for whoever believes in it.
Virtues of Belief in Allah:
Belief in Allah, His names, and His attributes instills in the individual the
love and glorification of Allah that result in his performing Allah's
instructions and avoiding His prohibitions. These are the means of achieving
ultimate happiness in this life and the hereafter for both the individual and
the society: "Whoever, male or female, does righteous deed, while believing, We
shall assuredly grant him a goodly life, and We shall reward them according to
the best of their deeds" (16:97).
Virtues of Belief in the Angels:
Appreciating the dignity of Allah, His might, and His sovereignty.
Gratitude toward Allah because He puts some of the angels in charge of His
servants, recording their deeds and other things that benefit them. ¥ Love and
admiration for the angels because of what they are doing, namely, worshipping
Allah in the best possible manner and praying for the believers.
Virtues of Belief in the Books:
Appreciating Allah's mercy and care for His people in that He sent down a
book to every nation for its guidance.
Appreciating Allah's wisdom, for He revealed in these books to every nation
that which suits them. The glorious Qur'an is the final book and it is suitable
to all people at all times until the Day of Judgment.
Showing gratitude for Allah's mercy in revealing these books.
Virtues of Belief in the Messengers:
Appreciating Allah's mercy and care for His people for sending them those
great messengers to guide them to the straight path. Thanking Allah for this
Loving and respecting the prophets and praising them in what they deserve,
because they are Allah's messengers and His choice among His people. They
worshipped Allah according to the best of their ability, conveyed His message to
mankind, gave sincere advice to the people, and bore patiently whatever hurt
Virtues of Belief in the Day of Judgment:
Endeavor to obey Allah to get the reward of that day and to avoid any
disobedience to him for fear of His punishment.
A consolation for the believer for whatever he misses of worldly enjoyment by
what he hopes to gain of blessings and reward of the hereafter.
Virtues of Belief in Fate and the Divine Decree:
Dependence on Allah when doing any action, because both the cause and effect
are the result of Allah's decree.
Ease of mind and comfort, because when the individual knows that everything
is by Allah's decree and that mishaps are going to take place anyway, his soul
will be at ease and his heart will be satisfied with Allah's decree. No one has
a more comfortable life, worry-free soul, and stronger confidence than a
believer in fate.
Freedom from arrogance when a goal is achieved, because this is a blessing
from Allah through what He decreed of the causes of good and success. The
individual should thank Allah for that and free himself from arrogance.
Freedom from worry and boredom in case of failure or mishap, because that is
by Allah's decree, the One who possesses the heavens and the Earth. Since that
is going to happen anyway, the individual should be patient and hope for the
reward from Allah. Allah points to the last two virtues in the following verse:
"No misfortune can happen on earth or in yourselves but is recorded in a decree
before We bring it into existence, that is really easy for Allah; that you may
not grieve for what escapes you, nor rejoice in what has come to you. Allah does
not love any vainglorious boaster" (57:22-3).
We pray to Allah, the Exalted, to reward us for this belief, to realize for
us its fruits, to increase our blessings, to keep us on the right path to which
He has guided us, and to bestow on us a blessing from Him. He is indeed the
Giver. Praise and gratitude be to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds, and peace and
blessings be on Prophet Muhammad, his family, his Companions, and those who
rightly follow them.