JUMAT SERMON: Derivable Lessons From ‘Iidul Adha’

JUMAT SERMON: Derivable Lessons From ‘Iidul Adha’
  • PublishedJune 21, 2024
  • By Imam Raji Musa Oladapo

I seek refuge in Allah from the devil the accursed and I start in the name of Allah, The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful. I testify that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah. I also testify that Prophet Muhammad (SAW) is His Messenger. May the benediction be upon His soul, members of His household, His companions, and those who follow His ways till the last day.

Say O “Ibaadi (My slaves) who have transgressed against themselves by committing evil deeds and sins. Despair not of Mercy of Allah, verily Allah forgives all sins. Truly He is oft Forgiving, Most Merciful.” 

Few days ago, we were all expecting the festive period of IidulAdha (Ileya). But now, it had come and gone. Nevertheless, there is a great need to x-ray it with a view of bringing out some lessons it left with us which I believe, worthy of recalling through this column. As we all know, IidulAdha is the second feast in Islam that we celebrate during the last month of lunar calendar as ordained by Allah (AS) in this book thus: “therefore turn into your Lord in prayer and sacrifice only to Him”. Quran 108:2.

My esteem readers, it is not sufficed to say that since we had consumed all the meats to our satisfaction, everything was over, but rather, we should allow the lessons therein to be lingering on in our hearts.

The first lesson is thanksgiving. Allah (SW) demands from us to be thankful to Him in all aspects of our life. He spared our lives to witness the feast and made the Quran (what we sacrifice) subject to us. He says: “Thus We made them subject to you that you may be grateful”. Quran 22:36. This is a great favour from Him and he deserves our appreciation. Nay but worship Allah (alone and none else and be among the grateful). Quran 39:66.


The second lesson is God’s consciousness (taqwahllah, i.e. piety) it is clearly stated in the Quran that Allah accepts only act of ibaadah carryout with piety. He says: “Verily, Allah accepts only from those who are Al-muttaqun (the pious). Quran 5:21. Likewise, the feast we had just celebrated is not exempted, Allah says: “It is neither their meat not their blood that reaches Allah, but it is piety from you that reaches Him. Quran 22:37. Therefore, both the affluent and the poor are at per on this. There is no room for anyone to feel being superior or inferior in this regard. It is the piety behind it that matters most. 

The third lesson is obedience to Allah. Prophet Ibrahim (AS) demonstrated his firm faith in Allah upon receiving the divine instruction that he should sacrifice his only son, Ismail, for Allah’s sake: “Listen to what the son said when his father told him of the divine directive “he said: O my father: do that which you are commanded”. Insha Allah (if Allah wills) you shall find me of As-sabirun (the patients). Quran 37:102. This is the highest level of undiluted faith one can demonstrate before ones parent. What followed that was a consolation from almighty Allah SW, He says; ‘and We ransomed him with a great sacrifice (ram). Quran 37:109.

The fourth lesson is trial. It teaches us that this world is full of trial, ups and down and toil. Allah says; (i)”…..and We shall make a trial of you with evil and with good. And to us you will be returned.” Quran 21:35. He says again; “Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: We believe and they will not be tested; and We indeed tested those who were before them. And Allah will certainly make (it) known (the truth of) those who are true, and will certainly make (it) known (the falsehood of) those who are liars.” Quran 29:2-3.

If not because of sincere faith that both the father and son had, such a trial was difficult to pass. It then teaches us that whatever condition we may find ourselves, no matter how hard, by our own assessment, we should still see Allah as the  only one capable of our deliverance.

The fifth lesson is the fulfillment of promise. Failure to fulfill ones promise is a great sin in the sight of Allah. Many people do not realize this. Where as many of our wordily affairs are hung on promises. Politicians make myriad of promises during the electioneering campaign, parents will make promises for their children, friends make promise for their friends, promise among the couples, etc. And nobody bothers to fulfill them. Prophet Ibrahim (AS) demonstrated fulfillment of promise he made then, that is now a reference point. Allah says; “you have fulfilled the dream”. Quran 37:105 Apart from this, fulfillment of promise is enjoined by Allah. He say; “and fulfill the covenant of Allah when you have covenanted. “Quran 16:91. In another verse, He says; “…And fulfill every covenant…verily the covenant will be questioned about.” Quran 17:34. With this dreadful submission from Allah (i.e. Will be questioned about) Muslims are enjoined not to handle the covenant/promise with levity whenever they make any. May Allah make it easy for us.

The sixth lesson is the Obedience to the Parent. As we could all see how Prophet Ismail submitted himself to the commandment of Allah through his father (Ibrahim) (AS), what he did was in total conformity with Allah’s directive to all mankind. Allah rates parents as number two after Him when he says in the Quran thus; “and your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And that you be dutiful to your parents.” Quran 17:23. This type of directive could still be found in another two places in the Quran. In fact, the Prophet (SAW) regarded disobedience to parents as one of the major sins. In his tradition related by Bakarah Nufal Ibn Haris (RAA) that the Prophet (SAW) said; “May I tell you what are the major sins? (he repeated this thrice). We said “certainly, O; Messenger of Allah; he said: Association of others with Allah; disobedience of parents…” Children are therefore enjoined to emulate Prophet Ismail (AS) in this regards. It is only when a parent asks his child to disobey Allah that he can only disobey him (parent).

The seventh lesson is goodness/kindness to the neighbour and the poor. Both the Quran and tradition of the Prophet (AS) gave a clear directive on how to distribute meats of the immolations. Allah says: “Then when they are down on their sides (after slaughter), eat thereof and feed the poor who does not ask (men), and the beggar who asks (men). Quran 22:36. In another verse, Allah says “…..and do good to kinsfolk, or orphans, the neediest, the neighbour who is near of kin, the nieghbour who is a stranger, the companion by your side….”Quran 4:36. The directive of the Prophet is that the meat must be divided into three. One third for the household, another one third for those mentioned above while the last one third can be kept for those that are not around during the period.

The philosophy behind that is to promote love and peaceful co-existence among mankind. It also teaches us to cultivate the idea of sharing little thing we have among ourselves. This, without mincing words, is worthy of sustenance even after the passage of the feast.

The seventh lesson is the importance of prayer. If we look at the sequence of how celebration of Udhiyah came into being, we will ascertain the significant role the efficacy of prayer played in it. It was the stuff of the prayer said by Prophet Ibrahim (AS) that turned out to be a blessing for him. He said: “My Lord: grant me (offspring) from the righteous. So we gave him the glad tidings of a forbearing boy.” Quran 37:100-101. We should therefore learn how to pray fervently and sincerely to Allah with the hope that our prayer would be answered since Allah Himself has assured us of granting of our request. He says: “….I respond to the invocation of the supplicant when he calls on me (without any mediator or intercessor) solet them obey me and believe in me…..” Quran 2:186.

The eighth lesson is the Remembrance of Allah. In many places in the Quran, Allah enjoins us to celebrate his remembrance. But during the last feast, this was done in surplus which I believe if sustained, is capable of containment of evil practices in the society. Allah says: “…verily As Salat (the prayer) parents from Al Fahsha (i.e. Great sins of every kind) and Al munkar (i.e. Every kind of wicked deeds) and the remembering of Allah is greater indeed. Quran 29:45.

He says again: “O you believer! Remember Allah with much remembrance. And glorify his praises morning and afternoon.” Quran 33:41-42. Even the seemingly lost peace that we are experiencing today is a result of our inability to remember Allah. Because he says “….verily, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest.” Quran 3:28.

In conclusion, I believe there are still other derivable lessons which I could not capture in this sermon but the few ones that I discussed are so important in our daily life activities if applied. I therefore charge myself and yourself to allow these lessons be our guiding references after this great feast. I leave you all under the care and watchful eyes of Almighty Allah. He is our Waliyy and He is sufficient for all of us.

Taqabala Allahu minna waminkum Kulu’aaminnah nuwaantum bilkhayr.

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