Islam Question and Answer – The meaning of “The bonds of Islam will be undone one by one”

The meaning of “The bonds of Islam will be undone one by one”
The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “The bonds of Islam will be undone one by one. Each time one bond is undone, the people will move to the next one (and adhere to that). The first bond to be undone will be ruling (al-hukm) and the last one will be prayer (al-salaah).”

 

What does this hadeeth mean? And what is meant by the undoing of ruling (al-hukm)?

 

Praise be to Allaah. 

The hadeeth mentioned was narrated by Imaam Ahmad in his
Musnad, al-Tabaraani in
al-Mu’jam al-Kabeer, and
Ibn Hibbaan in his Saheeh,
with a jayyid isnaad from Abu Umaamah al-Baahili (may Allaah be pleased
with him) from the Prophet (peace
and blessings of Allaah be upon him), who said:

“The bonds of Islam will be undone one by one. Each time one bond
is undone, the people will move to the next one (and adhere to that).
The first bond to be undone will be ruling (al-hukm)
and the last one will be prayer (al-salaah).”

The meaning of this hadeeth is apparent, which is that
the more Islam becomes “strange”, the more people will go against its
teachings and will undo its bonds, which is a reference to its obligations
and commandments. As the Prophet
(peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Islam began as a
stranger and will go back to being a stranger as it started, so give
glad tidings to the strangers.” (Narrated by Muslim in his Saheeh).

 The meaning of the phrase “the first bond to be undone
will be ruling (al-hukm)”
is apparent; it refers to the failure to rule according to the sharee’ah
of Allaah. This is what is happening today in most of the so-called
Muslim countries. It is known that what is obligatory upon all is to
rule according to the sharee’ah of Allaah in all things, and to beware
of ruling according to laws and customs which go against the sharee’ah,
because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“But no, by your Lord, they can
have no Faith, until they make you (O Muhammad) judge in all disputes
between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decisions,
and accept (them) with full submission [al-Nisaa’ 4:65]  

“And so judge
(you O Muhammad) among them by what Allaah has revealed and follow not
their vain desires, but beware of them lest they turn you (O Muhammad)
far away from some of that which Allaah has sent down to you. And if
they turn away, then know
that Allaah’s Will is to punish them for some sins of theirs. And truly,
most of men are Faasiqoon (rebellious and disobedient to Allaah).

Do they then seek the judgement
of (the days of) Ignorance? And who is better in judgement than Allaah
for a people who have firm Faith [al-Maa’idah 5:49-50] 

“And whosoever
does not judge by what Allaah has revealed, such are the Kaafiroon (i.e.
disbelievers — of a lesser degree as they do not act on Allaah’s Laws
[al-Maa’idah 5:44]

 “And
whosoever does not judge by that which Allaah has revealed, such are
the Zaalimoon (polytheists and wrongdoers — of a lesser degree). [al-Maa’idah
5:45]

 “And
whosoever does not judge by what Allaah has revealed (then) such (people)
are the Faasiqoon [the rebellious i.e. disobedient (of a lesser degree)]
to Allaah [al-Maa’idah 5:47]

 The scholars (may Allaah have mercy on them) explained
that the rulers of the Muslims are obliged to rule according to the
sharee’ah of Allaah in all the Muslims’ affairs and in all the conflicts
that arise among them, in obedience to these verses. They explained
that the one who rules by anything other than that which Allaah revealed,
if he believes that it is permissible for him to do so, is guilty of
major kufr which puts him beyond the pale of Islam… But if he believes
that this is not permissible, but he rules by something other than that
which Allaah revealed for a bribe or for some other purpose, although
he believed that that is not permissible, and that it is obligatory
to rule according to that which Allaah revealed, then he is guilty of
lesser kufr, lesser zulm and lesser fisq.

 We ask Allaah, may He be glorified, to make all the
Muslim rulers rule and judge according to the sharee’ah and to make
their people adhere to it, and to cause them to beware of whatever goes
against it, for He is the Most Generous, Most Kind. Undoubtedly ruling
according to sharee’ah and acting in accordance with it is in our best
interests in this world and in the Hereafter, and will be a source of
pride in this world and in the Hereafter. It will keep us safe from
the plots of our enemies and help us to be victorious over them, as
Allaah says (interpretation of the meanings):

 “O you who believe!
If you help (in the cause of) Allaah, He will help you, and make your
foothold firm” [Muhammad 47:7]

 “and
(as for) the believers, it was incumbent upon Us to help (them)” [al-Room
30:47]

 “Verily, Allaah
will help those who help His (Cause). Truly, Allaah is All-Strong,
All-Mighty.

Those (Muslim rulers) who, if
We give them power in the land, (they) enjoin Iqaamat-as-Salaah
[i.e. to perform the five compulsory congregational Salaah (prayers)
(the males in mosques)], to pay the Zakaah and they enjoin Al-Ma‘roof
(i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do), and forbid
Al-Munkar (i.e. disbelief, polytheism and all that Islam has forbidden)
[i.e. they make the Qur’aan as the law of their country in all the spheres
of life]. And with Allaah rests the end of (all) matters (of creatures)
[al-Hajj 22:40-41]

 “Verily, We will indeed make victorious Our Messengers
and those who believe (in the Oneness of Allaah Islamic Monotheism)
in this world’s life and on the Day when the witnesses will stand forth,
(i.e. Day of Resurrection)

The Day when their excuses will
be of no profit to Zaalimoon (polytheists, wrongdoers and disbelievers
in the Oneness of Allaah). Theirs will be the curse, and theirs will
be the evil abode (i.e. painful torment in Hell-fire)” [Ghaafir
40:51-52]

And there are many similar aayaat.

With regard to the words of the Prophet
(peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), “and the last one will
be prayer (al-salaah)”,
this refers to large numbers of people who do not pray and who are negligent
with regard to salaah. This is what is happening today in many Muslim
countries. We ask Allaah to put the Muslims’ affairs right and to help
them to adhere strongly to His religion and to be steadfast.

 

From Majmoo’ Fataawa wa Maqaalaat Mutanawwi’ah li Samaahat al-Shaykh al-‘Allaamah ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Baaz (may Allaah have mercy on him), vol. 9, p. 205

 

 

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