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The Prescribed Prayer: Chapter Two (cont.)


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AL-KHUTBAH (THE SERMON)

According to the Sunnah, the Khutab, sermons of the Prophet (s 'a.s ), usually contain the praises of Allah, Al-Mau'ezah, exhortatory counsel and the recitation of Al-Quran. The Prophet's Khutab had never been, according to his Sunnah, nor the Sunnah of his companions, a forum for settling personal grudges against other Muslims, nor was it for petty politics. An Imaam should beware that Al-Khutbah is an amaanah, trust, of Allahu ta'aalaa, and as such should not be abused.

Imaam Muslim and others reported that Jaabir bin Sumrah (r.'a.), related that: the Prophet (s.'a.s.) used to deliver the Khutbah standing, but he sits between them, and recites the verses of Al-Quran and admonished the people. Allaahu ta'aalaa said:

"Invite (all) to the way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious; for thy Lord knoweth best who have strayed from His path." (Al-Quran, 16:125)

Indeed, there are twin Khutbas in Salaatul Jum'ah, they are separated by a short pause in between. The first Khutbah is relatively longer than the second one. However, both Khutbahs should not be too long, so that the prime time of Zuhr is missed, as it was the Sunnah of the Prophet to prolong Salaat and shorten the Khutbah. 'Ammaar bin Yaasir reported that the Prophet said:

"Indeed, the long prayers of a man and his short Khutbahs are signs of his understanding of the religion, therefore, prolong your prayers and shorten your Khutbahs." (Ahmad/Muslim)

It is highly recommended to start the Khutbah with the praises of Allaahu ta'aala and invocation of the Prophet Muhammad (s.'a.s.), such as:
Al-hamdu lillaahi, ahmaduhu All praise is due to Allah, I praise
wa asta'eenuhu wa astah Him and seek His assistance, and I
deehi, wa astaghfiruhu, beseech His guidance, and I ask for
His forgiveness,
Wa ash hadu allaa ilaaha I bear witness that there is no deity
illallaah wah dahuu laa but Allah the One, He has no
shareeka lahuu, associates,
Wa ash hadu anna Muham- And I bear witness that Muhammad is
madan 'Abduhu wa rasuuluh. His servant and His Messenger.

Any subject relating to the welfare of the Muslim community may be discussed in both Khutbahs in the light of the Glorious Quran and Hadeeth.

The audience should pay attention to the Khutbah, for unlike other sermons, speaking during the Khutbah is completely forbidden and renders one's Jum'ah invalid. In Hadeeth by Ibn Abbaas, the Prophet said:

"Whoever speaks on Yaumul Jum'ah while the Imaam is delivering Khutbah, he is like a donkey which carries huge tomes, and (there is) no Jum'ah for the one who tells him to be quiet." (Ahmad)

It is recommended that the second Khutbah be opened with the praises of Allah and blessings on the Prophet, such as:
Al hamdu lillaah was Salaatu All praise is due to Allah, we ask
was Salaamu 'alaa khairil Allah's peace and blessings on the one
Mursaleen Muhammadin wa best among the prophets, Muhammad
'alaa aalihee wa sah bihee bin Abdullah as well as on his family
ajma'een. and his companions.

It is a tradition that the Khutbah be concluded with Istighfaar, seeking Allah's forgiveness, while the Imaam reminds Muslims to invoke Allah's blessing on the Rasuul, Messenger (s.'a.s.) by reciting chapter Al-Ahzaab, verse 56:
"Innallaaha wa malaaikatuhu Allah and his angels send blessings
yusalluuna 'alan Nabiyy yaa on the Prophet, O ye that believe,
ayyuhalladheena aamanuu send ye blessings on him, and salute
sallu 'alaihi wa sallimu tas- him with all respect.
leema." (Al-Quran, 33:56)

Then the Imaam recites the Salaatu 'Alan Nabiyy, an example of which has been mentioned in our previous section on the procedures of Salaah. This is followed by a general supplication on the Muslim Ummah all over the world.

After the Khutbah, the Iqaamah is announced and the Imaam leads the prayer in a loud voice. The procedures of Salaatul Jum'ah are similar to that of Salaatus Subh except that the intention, Niyyah, is different.

THE LANGUAGE OF THE KHUTBAH

Deducing the prerequisites of the khutbah from the Sunnah, the scholars had agreed that the khutbah should precede Salaah and should be delivered aloud, but they disagree on the intention for, and the language of the khutbah. Because of this khilaaf, disagreement, there is a controversy whether khutbah could be delivered in any language other than Arabic, such as English, Hausa and Urdu.

Despite the khilaaf, and with the exception of Imaam Malik bin Anas (r.'a.'), the majority of scholars, including Imaam Shaafie, Imaam Abu Haneefah and Imaam Alimad bin Hanbal (r.'a.), are unanimous in saying that the khutbah can be delivered in any language if the audience does not understand the Arabic, provided that the praises of Allah, the recitation of Al-Quran and the greetings of the Prophet (s.'a.s.) are said in the Arabic language.

Indeed, the only evidence for those who said khutbah should always be in Arabic, is that the Prophet (s.'a.s.) used to deliver his khutbah in the Arabic language. On the other hand, Imaam Saafi'e and others said the objectives and purpose of the khutbah could be attained if it is delivered in the language that the audience understands. They said it has been related that the Prophet (s.'a.s.) said to Ummu Khaalid bint Khaalid bin Sa'eed bin 'Aas, who was born and raised in Habashah, Ethiopia, he said to her, "Ummu Khaalid, this is Suna'a." The point here is the word Suna'a which means in the Ethiopian language "good." The Prophet used the word Suna'a because it was her language.

ATTAINMENT OF A RAKA'AH IN JUM'AH

A majority of the scholars in Islaam have agreed that whoever attains, with the Imaam, one raka'ah of Jum'ah should add one more and has attained the Jum'ah. That is in accordance with Hadeeth by Ibn 'Umar in which the prophet (s.'a.s.) said:

"Whoever attains a raka'ah of Jum'ah should add one more and his prayer is complete." (Nasaaee)

On the other hand, whoever misses both raka'aats should offer Salaatu Zuhr.

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