In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.
Allaah [The Exalted] said: [وَلِلَّهِ ٱلۡعِزَّةُ وَلِرَسُولِهِۦ وَلِلۡمُؤۡمِنِينَ – But honour, power and glory belong to Allaah, His Messenger (Muhammad), and to the believers]. [Surah Al- Munaafiqoon’ Aayah 8]
Al-Allaamah Rabee Bin Haadi Al-Mad’khali [may Allaah preserve him] stated: Honour, power and glory belongs to Allaah, and then to the people of Tawheed. That is because they neither humble themselves nor bow except to Allaah (alone). They do not fear (anyone)- neither place their hope (in anything or anyone) nor do they have a fervent desire except for the reward of The Most Great, The Compeller, in whose Hand is the dominion, the Owner of everthing and the One who has grasped everything by its forelock [i.e. everything is under His absolute control, dominion and authority] – Glorified and Exalted be He [i.e. Allaah].
Therefore, it is obligated on a Muslim to have great fear when he mentions Allaah and when he fulfils any act of worship, so that he finds himself in that station of perfection in worship described by the Messenger [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him], which is “to worship Allaah as if you see Him, and even though you cannot see Him (i.e. in this life), but you know that He sees you.” [Al-Majmoo 1/26]
Abu Hurairah [may Allaah be pleased with him] narrated that Allah’s Messenger [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him] said, “People are like mines of gold and silver; those who were excellent in Jahiliya (during the days of ignorance) are excellent In Islam, when they have an understanding (in the religion), and the souls are troops collected together and those who had a mutual familiarity amongst themselves would have affinity amongst them, and those who opposed one of them, would be at variance with one another”. [Saheeh Muslim 2638]
Abu Hurairarah [may Allaah be pleased with him] narrated: “Allaah’s Messenger [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him] was asked, ‘Who is the most honourable amongst the people?’ He said, ‘The one who fears Allaah the most’. They said, ‘We are not asking you about this’. He said, ‘Then the most honourable amongst the people is Yusuf, Allaah’s Prophet, the son of Allaah’s Prophet, the son of Allaah’s Prophet, the son of Allaah’s Khaleel’. They said, ‘We are not asking you about this’. He said, ‘So you are asking me about the Arabs’ descent; the people are of different descents and those who were best in the Pre-Islamic period are the best in Islam, if they acquire [sound] understanding of [religious knowledge]’”.
Al-Allaamah Zayd Bin Haadi Al-Mad’khali [may Allaah have mercy upon] said:
In this hadeeth, it is legislated for the one to whom something related to the religion is hidden that he asks, and the scholar is the one who is asked. The Prophet [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him] is the foremost teacher and the one who conveys the religion (ordained) by Allaah. His companions used to ask him that which they wanted to understand in order to act upon it.This hadeeth is proof [regarding the fact that] the companions of the Prophet asked about affairs related to their religion in order to acquire understanding of the religion. Knowledge- as it is said – is based on questions and answers. In this hadeeth there is proof (regarding) the virtue of Taqwah, just as Allaah [The Mighty and Majestic] said: [إِنَّ أَڪۡرَمَكُمۡ عِندَ ٱللَّهِ أَتۡقَٮٰكُمۡۚ– The most honourable of you in the sight of Allaah are those who fear Allaah the most]. Taqwa gathers every good, because it is clearly manifested in fulfilling commands, keeping away from prohibitions, declaring lawful what is lawful and declaring unlawful what is unlawful – inwardly [in one’s heart] and apparent [on one’s actions], and adherence to the [Qur’aan, the Sunnah, the Straight path etc].
In this hadeeth there is proof regarding the virtue of Yusuf [peace be upon him] and his fathers because the Prophet [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him] mentioned them.
In this hadeeth there is proof regarding the humility of the Prophet because he made known to them the virtue of his brother- the noble Prophet – Yusuf.
In this hadeeth there is proof regarding the virtue of the Arabs if they possess understanding of the religion of Islaam and learn the religion, for indeed the noble Qur’aan was sent down in the language of the Arab, so if they acquire understanding of the religion [ordained] by Allaah, they will be able to convey it in Allaah’s earth. This is what happened in this Ummah of Muhammad, for indeed when he was sent, he called the Arabs to Eemaan until a great Ummah was established who were able to perform Jihaad and gave Dawah in the path of Allaah. So, they dispersed in the earth after acquiring understanding of their religion from Allaah’s Messenger [peace and blessings of allaah be upon him] and spread it in the regions of the earth- propagating, teaching, performing Jihaad and judging between the people, until Allaah [gave Islaam the upper hand] almost everywhere in the world through them, and this was a favour bestowed on them by Allaah.
In this hadeeth there is proof regarding the virtue of Fiqh in the religion and that the one who acquires understanding of the religion [ordained] by Allaah – with a good intention- in order to remove ignorance from himself, act based on the understanding in the Islamic religion and spread it in the earth, then indeed he has a great reward and station in the sight of Allaah. And Allaah knows best.
The evidence (in this hadeeth) is that the people are of different descents. The best of them during the Pre-Islamic era are the best in Islaam if they possess [sound] understanding [in the religion]. Therefore, whoever was from the good people during the Pre-Islamic era and acted that way amongst the people, then Allaah blessed them to accept Islaam and they acquire understanding, they’ll be the best people because they had a good basis which Islaam increased in good and perfection. [An Excerpt from At-taleeqaat Al-Maleehah Alaa Silsilah Al-Ahaadeeth As-Saheehah. 1/34-35]
Ameerul Mumineen Umar Ibnul Khattaab [may Allaah be pleased with him] stated, “Indeed, we are a people whom Allaah has given honour by way of Islaam, so when we (begin) to seek honour through other than what Allaah has given us honour, Allaah will degrade us!” [Reported by Al-Haakim in Al-Mustadrak (1/61-62]
Whosoever Desires Honour, Then to Allah Belong All Honour