In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.
Al-Allaamah Rabee Bin Haadi Al-Mad’khali [may Allaah preserve him] stated:
Many trials have occurred and from them the trial of the khawaarij, the Rawaafid and killing. Deviation and misguidance have occurred – either fighting and trials (related) to politics, creed, methodology and what is similar to them. Many people who were to be destroyed were destroyed and the one whom Allaah protected was saved and adhered to the true methodology. Indeed, all praises and thanks be to Allaah, many were saved due to the clarity and establishment of this methodology (of the Salaf), just as the Messenger promised that “There will not cease to be a group from my Ummah manifest and upon the truth, neither harmed by those who forsake them nor by those who oppose them until the hour is established”.
Therefore, during every trial, they (the scholars of Ahlus Sunnah) must openly proclaim the truth and clarify it for the people. They should distinguish – for them – between guidance and misguidance, truth and falsehood, the manner in which the people will be safeguarded from these trials, the path through which they will be saved from entering into trials and other affairs (by way of which) Allaah guides this group when faced with every trial. And indeed the author [i.e. Imaam Al-Aajurree] reiterated this hadeeth, “A man will wake up in the morning as a Muslim and by evening he becomes a disbeliever”. Yes, a man may be upon truth and then you do not see him thereafter except that he has become a disbeliever or a misguided innovator! This is nothing else but humiliation! He used to claim that he is upon good, a possessor of knowledge and upon the truth, but then he falls into disbelief-either major disbelief that exits a person from the fold of Islam or the one that does not exit a person from the fold of Islam. This is ignominy and Allaah’s Protection is sought. How many people have been humiliated and exposed by a trial! You come to know of them and their false claims are unveiled, and their reality is clarified for you. [An Excerpt from ‘Adh-Dharee’ah Ilaa Bayaan Maqaasid Kitaab Ash-Sharee’ah – 1/200-202]
The Shaikh also said: By Allaah! We have clarified the misguidance they [i.e. ahlul bidah] are upon in order to enlighten our children [i.e. the youth] and brothers, and distinguish- for them – between truth and falsehood, guidance and misguidance, sunnah and bidah, the people of truth and the people of falsehood, the people guidance and the people of misguidance. This is not a new path, rather it is a path legislated by Allaah, legislated by Allaah’s Messenger [sallal laahu alayhi wasallam] and established by the Sahaabah, the Taabi’een and the Imaams of [upright] guidance. [Marhaban Yaa Taalibal Ilm’ page 28]
The Shaikh also said: The scholar who fears Allaah – the one who is [constantly conscious of the fact that Allah sees, hears and knows everything about him] – will act upon what he knows, seek after Allaah’s pleasure and keep away from what angers Allaah. He knows what pleases Allaah [The Mighty and Majestic] and what angers Allaah.
Indeed, Allaah and His Messenger praised knowledge and the scholars, and the Messenger [sallal laahu alayhi wasallam] informed us that the scholars are the inheritors of the Prophets; however, not every scholar is an inheritor of the prophets; rather one has to be sincere in the path of knowledge, implement knowledge, act upon it and spread it amongst the people. So, he rectifies himself through this knowledge and rectifies others. If he does not act, knowledge will be a tool of corruption and destruction, and Allaah’s refuge is sought. And because of this, Allaah dispraised the one who does not act upon the knowledge he has acquired and promises him the severest punishment. Allaah said:
يَـٰٓأَيُّہَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوٓاْ إِنَّ ڪَثِيرً۬ا مِّنَ ٱلۡأَحۡبَارِ وَٱلرُّهۡبَانِ لَيَأۡكُلُونَ أَمۡوَٲلَ ٱلنَّاسِ بِٱلۡبَـٰطِلِ وَيَصُدُّونَ عَن سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِۗ وَٱلَّذِينَ يَكۡنِزُونَ ٱلذَّهَبَ وَٱلۡفِضَّةَ وَلَا يُنفِقُونَہَا فِى سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِ فَبَشِّرۡهُم بِعَذَابٍ أَلِيمٍ۬
O you who believe! Verily, there are many of the (Jewish) rabbis and the (Christian) monks who devour the wealth of mankind in falsehood, and hinder (them) from the Way of Allah (i.e. Allah’s Religion of Islamic Monotheism). And those who hoard up gold and silver [Al-Kanz: the money, the Zakat of which has not been paid], and spend it not in the Way of Allah, -announce unto them a painful torment. [Surah at-Tawbah. Aayah 34]
Allaah [The Exalted] said:
يَـٰٓأَيُّہَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ لِمَ تَقُولُونَ مَا لَا تَفۡعَلُونَ
ڪَبُرَ مَقۡتًا عِندَ ٱللَّهِ أَن تَقُولُواْ مَا لَا تَفۡعَلُونَ
O you who believe! Why do you say that which you do not do? Most hateful it is with Allah that you say that which you do not do. [Surah Saff. Aayah 3]
One of the most hateful [deeds] is that one speaks and gives admonition based on knowledge, but he does not act. Allaah said:
أَلَمۡ يَأۡنِ لِلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوٓاْ أَن تَخۡشَعَ قُلُوبُہُمۡ لِذِڪۡرِ ٱللَّهِ وَمَا نَزَلَ مِنَ ٱلۡحَقِّ وَلَا يَكُونُواْ كَٱلَّذِينَ أُوتُواْ ٱلۡكِتَـٰبَ مِن قَبۡلُ فَطَالَ عَلَيۡہِمُ ٱلۡأَمَدُ فَقَسَتۡ قُلُوبُہُمۡۖ وَكَثِيرٌ۬ مِّنۡہُمۡ فَـٰسِقُونَ
Has not the time come for the hearts of those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah – Islamic Monotheism) to be affected by Allah’s Reminder (this Qur’an), and that which has been revealed of the truth, lest they become as those who received the Scripture [the Taurat (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel)] before (i.e. Jews and Christians), and the term was prolonged for them and so their hearts were hardened? And many of them were Fasiqun (rebellious, disobedient to Allah). [Suarah Al-Hadeed. Aayah 16]
It is obligated on the Islamic Ummah to avoid the path of these misguided ones amongst the people of the scripture – those who acquired knowledge but did not act, so their hearts became corrupt and the majority of them became rebellious, disobedient. That is because not acting on knowledge leads to hardness of the heart. And when this hardness afflicts the heart, it destroys it and thus neither does the heart accept truth nor act upon knowledge. It leads to concealment of knowledge, acting contrary to knowledge, leads [the person to] follow desires and rejects truth that is a clear as the sun.
This is found in this Ummah, just as the Prophet [alayhis salaatu wassalaam] said: ‘’The best of the people are those living in my generation, then those who will follow the latter and then those who come after them. Then there will come after them people who will be treacherous and will not be trustworthy, they will bear witness without being asked to do so (1), and they will vow, but will never fulfil their vows, and fatness will appear among them.’’ (2).
They give false testimony, act treacherously and deceitfully. They behave a very sinful manner and follow evil desires, except those whom Allaah safeguards amongst the Taa’ifatul Mansoorah [i.e. the aided group of Muslims upon the straight path] – those whom Allaah’s Messenger [alayhis salaatu wassalaam] praised. Therefore, it is obligated on us to acquire knowledge for the sake of Allaah [The Mighty and Majestic] and act upon it. Ignorance is a deadly disease and knowledge is a weapon that will destroy you if you do not act upon it, and Allaah’s refuge is sought. [Marhaban Yaa Taalibal Ilm pages 268-270]
[Footnote 1]: Regarding the statement, ‘’They will bear witness without being asked to do so.’’ This can mean that they bear witness before being asked, or they bear witness based on falsehood, or they give witness without being from those who are worthy of it. (For further details see Sharh Saheeh Muslim 12/17)]. However, there is another Hadeeth in which the Prophet [sallal laahu alayhi wasallam] stated: ‘’Should I not inform you about the best of witnesses, they are those who bear witness before being asked.’’ The scholars say that what is intended by this hadeeth is for example: someone has a witness to give on behalf of another person based on truth, but the person does not know about it, so he [i.e. the one who should give the witness] informs the person about it; or for example, a person has already passed away and another person knows what the deceased person has left behind as inheritance, so he bears witness to that and makes it known. [For further details see Fat-hul Baari 5/260]
[Footnote 2]: And regarding the statement, ‘’And fatness will appear among them.’’ – Meaning: These people give importance to the means of fattening themselves – food, drink and over-abundance. So, their only concern is their bodies and fattening themselves. As for being fat without choice, then one cannot be blamed for that, just as a person cannot be blamed for being tall, short, black or white…[For further details, see Majmoo Al-Fataawaa 10/1056 -By Shaikh Uthaymeen (rahimahullaah)]