All praise is due to Allāh, the Lord of the Worlds. He created human beings, honoured them above all His other creation and made their blood sacred to one another. I bear witness that there is no deity save Allāh, having no associates. He is the Ultimate Sovereign, the Ultimate Truth, the Manifest. I also bear witness that our Master Muḥammad is the Servant of Allāh and His Messenger. He made him the seal of the Messengers. May the peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him, his pure blessed family and companions, and all those who follow them in righteousness till the Day of Judgment.
In shā’ Allāh, our khuṭbah today shall be centered on the sanctity of human blood, irrespective of religious affiliations. Allāh, the Most Exalted, attributed great sanctity to the human soul. This is because He created Man in the best of stature, gave him life and honoured him in the best manners of honouring. The Almighty says,
وَلَقَدكَرَّمنَا بَنِي ءَادَمَ وَحَمَلنَٰهُم فِي ٱلبَرِّ وَٱلبَحرِ وَرَزَقنَٰهُم مِّنَ ٱلطَّيِّبَٰتِ وَفَضَّلنَٰهُم عَلَىٰ كَثِير مِّمَّن خَلَقنَا تَفضِيلا
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And We have certainly honoured the children of Ādam and carried them on the land and sea and provided for them of the good things and preferred them over much of what We have created, with [definite] preference. (Q. 17: 70)
That is, Allāh has elevated their standing in honour and privilege above all other creatures. Amongst the signs of such honouring that Allāh, the Almighty, attributed to mankind is that He made their blood sacred and protected their souls. Allāh, the Creator of All, has forbidden causing any harm to or assault on humans. The Originator, the Most Exalted says,
وَلَا تَقتُلُواْ ٱلنَّفسَ ٱلَّتِي حَرَّمَ ٱللَّهُ إِلَّا بِٱلحَقِّ
And do not kill the soul which Allah has forbidden [to be killed] except by [legal] right. (Q. 6: 151)
Further stressing the sanctity of the human soul, the Qur’ān mentions the first murder in the history of human beings and its grave results. The Exalted is He says,
فَطَوَّعَت لَهُۥ نَفسُهُۥ قَتلَ أَخِيهِ فَقَتَلَهُۥ فَأَصبَحَ مِنَ ٱلخَٰسِرِينَ
And his soul permitted to him the murder of his brother, so he killed him and became among the losers. (Q.5: 30)
This means the killer of his brother became amongst the losers because he lost his Hereafter for the sake of this world and introduced the evil tradition of murdering to the humanity. As a result, he bears the burden of his crime and the burdens of whoever follows in his steps and commits a crime till the Day of Judgment. The Prophet (SAW) said in this regard, “None is killed unjustly, but the first son of Ādam will have a part of its burden because he was the first to establish the tradition of murdering.”
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Dear Muslims, Allāh, the Most High, describes the crime of murdering a human being as a tremendous sin for He says,
مَن قَتَلَ نَفسَا بِغَيرِ نَفسٍ أَو فَسَاد فِي ٱلأَرضِ فَكَأَنَّمَا قَتَلَ ٱلنَّاسَ جَمِيعا وَمَن أَحَاهَا فَكَأَنَّمَا أَحيَا ٱلنَّاسَ جَمِيعا
…Whoever kills a soul unless for a soul or for corruption [done] in the land – it is as if he had slain mankind entirely. And whoever saves one – it is as if he had saved mankind entirely. (Q.5: 32)
This means whoever kills just one soul it will be as if he had killed the entire human beings on earth. Yet, whoever refrains from killing a person and protects his/her life out of fear of Allāh, the Almighty, it will be as if he had saved the lives of the entire human beings in this world.
Indeed, in this verse, there is an indication to the sanctity of the human life regardless of any colour, race or religion. Allāh, the Almighty, says,
وَمَن يَقتُل مُؤمِنا مُّتَعَمِّدا فَجَزَاؤُهُۥ جَهَنَّمُ خَٰلِدا فِيهَا وَغَضِبَ ٱللَّهُ عَلَيهِ وَلَعَنَهُۥ وَأَعَدَّ لَهُۥ عَذَابًا عَظِيما
But whoever kills a believer intentionally – his recompense is Hell, wherein he will abide eternally, and Allāh has become angry with him and has cursed him and has prepared for him a great punishment. (Q.4: 93)
The Messenger of Allāh (SAW) further described the severe punishment for killing a human being as he said, “Whoever killed a person who is granted the pledge of protection by the Muslims shall not smell the fragrance of Paradise though its fragrance can be smelt at a distance of forty years (of traveling).”
O Believers! Please know that transgressing the sanctity of human life is one of the gravest sins that invoke severe punishment and great disgrace upon its doer on the Day of Judgment. About this, the Most Exalted, says,
وَٱلَّذِينَ لَا يَدعُونَ مَعَ ٱللَّهِ إِلَٰهًا ءَاخَرَ وَلَا يَقتُلُونَ ٱلنَّفسَ ٱلَّتِي حَرَّمَ ٱللَّهُ إِلَّا بِٱلحَقِّ وَلَا يَزنُونَ وَمَن يَفعَل ذَٰلِكَ يَلقَ أَثَاما يُضَٰعَف لَهُ ٱلعَذَابُ يَومَ ٱلقِيَٰمَةِ وَيَخلُد فِيهِۦ مُهَانًا
And those who do not invoke with Allāh another deity or kill the soul which Allāh has forbidden [to be killed], except by right, and do not commit unlawful sexual intercourse. And whoever should do that will meet a penalty. Multiplied for him is the punishment on the Day of Resurrection, and he will abide therein humiliated. (Q.25: 68-69).
On the same matter, the Messenger of Allāh (SAW) said, “A faithful believer remains at liberty regarding his religion unless he kills somebody unlawfully.” This means a believer will continue to find ample scope in his religion as long as he does not kill anyone. Yet, if he sheds blood, then he would destroy his life the same way as he destroyed that of others.
For this reason, the divine decrees prescribed legal retribution for whoever kills a human soul. Allāh, the Most High says,
وَلَكُم فِي ٱلقِصَاصِ حَيَوٰة يَٰأُوْلِي ٱلأَلبَٰبِ لَعَلَّكُم تَتَّقُونَ
And there is for you in legal retribution [saving of] life, O you [people] of understanding, that you may become righteous. (Q.2: 179)
The aim of such rulings is to protect human beings from any harm or transgression. The Almighty says,
وَكَتَبنَا عَلَيهِم فِيهَا أَنَّ ٱلنَّفسَ بِٱلنَّفسِ وَٱلعَينَ بِٱلعَينِ وَٱلأَنفَ بِٱلأَنفِ وَٱلأُذُنَ بِٱلأُذُنِ وَٱلسِّنَّ بِٱلسِّنِّ وَٱلجُرُوحَ قِصَاص
And We ordained for them therein a life for a life, an eye for an eye, a nose for a nose, an ear for an ear, a tooth for a tooth, and for wounds is legal retribution.” (Q.5: 45)
Furthermore, the Prophet (SAW) clearly explained the tremendous punishment that the murderer will face on the Day of Judgment as he said, “The slain will bring his killer on the Day of Resurrection with his forelock and his head in his hand, and with his jugular veins flowing with blood, and will say, ‘O Lord, he killed me.”
As such, Muslims well recognised that killing the life that Allāh has forbidden is a great Fitnah. To this effect, ‘Abdullāh ibn ‘Umar, may Allāh be pleased with him, said, “Truly, one of the worst dilemmas that one cannot find a way out of is shedding the blood that Allāh has forbidden without justification.”
This leads us to the fact that Islām is a religion of mercy, forbearance, love and peace. The Most Merciful says,
وَمَا أَرسَلنَٰكَ إِلَّا رَحمَة لِّلعَٰلَمِينَ
And We have not sent you, [O Muhammad], except as a mercy to the worlds. (Q.21: 107)
With this in mind, let us implore to Allāh to guide us to right path and make righteousness easy for us.
May Allāh direct us all to the blessings of the Glorious Qur’ān and the Sunnah of His Messenger (SAW).
أَقُولُ قَوْلِي هَذَا وَأَسْتَغْفِرُ اللَّهَ لِي وَلَكُمْ وَلِسَائِرِ المُسْلِمينَ وَالمُسْلِمَاتْ فَاسْتَغْفِرُوهْ إِنَّهُ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ
I say this and ask Allāh for forgiveness for me and you, so invoke Him for forgiveness, for He is the Most Forgiving, the Most Merciful.
الحمد لله رب العالمين والصلاة والسلام على سيد المرسلين وعلى آله وأصحابه أجمعين
All praise is due to Allāh, the Lord of the Worlds. May the peace and blessings of Allāh be upon our Master Muḥammad, his pure family, companions, and all those who follow them in righteousness till the Day of Judgment.
Please be aware, O Servants of Allāh that you are asked to obey Him the Most Exalted, and know that He has prepared severe punishment to those who violate the sanctity of the human blood. As evidence of this, Allāh made bloodshed the first matter concerning which He will judge amongst people on the Day of Judgment. The Prophet (SAW) said in this regard, “The first cases to be decided amongst the people (on the Day of Resurrection) will be those of bloodshed.”
Reflection on all these sacred verses and noble aḥādīth leads us to think about the reasons behind all those crimes that are being committed against the innocent people around the world these days. Here in Nigeria the case of Book Haram and other terrorist groups is miserable, killing people unjustifiably. This makes us wonder how all such blood-shedding is being done under the name of Islām, which prohibits it.
Indeed, it is right time now for one to think as to when those extremist groups will cease to exist and stop reaping the lives of innocent people.
We should also think about our responsibility towards our children and community amidst such circumstances. Undoubtedly, each one of us carries the responsibility of condemning such actions as well as protecting our children against such crimes and extremist ideologies that harm Islām and Muslims too.
That is said, please bear in mind that you are instructed to invoke peace and blessings on the Prophet (SAW). The Messenger of Allāh (SAW) said, “For everyone who invokes a blessing on me will receive ten blessings from Allāh.”
O Allāh, please confer Your blessings and grant peace upon our Prophet Muḥammad (SAW), his family and all of the companions.
O Allāh, we seek you favour to make us amongst those who speak in kindness, say all that is good and work according to it, and thus be beneficial to themselves, their community and homeland.
O Lord of the Worlds, we beseech You to be pleased with us and guide us to that which avail Your satisfaction. May Allāh have mercy on the honourable deceased Muslims and martyrs of our country and those of other Islamic countries and gather them with the righteous. May Allāh make their dwelling with the ones upon whom Allāh has bestowed favour of the prophets and the steadfast affirmers of truth, O the Most Gracious the Most Forgiving.
© Mubin Olatoye Raji