Will of Allah?

Say: "Nothing shall ever happen to us except what Allah has ordained for us. He is our Mawla (protector).” And in Allah let the believers put their trust.)
Quran (Surah Tawba, Verse 51)

No calamity occurs on earth nor in yourselves but it is inscribed in the Book of Decrees before We bring it into existence. Verily, that is easy for Allah.
In order that you may not grieve at the things over that you fail to get, nor rejoice over that which has been given to you. And Allah likes not prideful boasters.
Quran (Surah Hadid57, Verses 22,23)

"Verily, the people (pagans) have gathered against you (a great army), therefore, fear them," but it (only) increased them in Faith and they said: "Allâh (Alone) is Sufficient for us, and He is the Best Disposer of affairs (for us)." Quran (Surah Aal-e-Imran, Verse 173)

If Allah touch thee with affliction none can remove it but He; if He touch thee with happiness He hath power over all things.(6:17)

And with Him are the keys of the unseen; none knows them except Him. And He knows what is on the land and in the sea. Not a leaf falls but that He knows it. And no grain is there within the darknesses of the earth and no moist or dry [thing] but that it is [written] in a clear record.(6:59)

Punishment of tyrants:

Then he (Pharaoh) gathered his people and cried aloud, “I am your lord, most high. “So God seized him with punishment for his last and first transgression. Verily, in this is an instructive admonition for whosoever fears Allah. (Quran 79: 24 & 25)

The blame is only against those who Oppress men with wrong-doing and insolently transgress beyond bounds through the land defying right and justice: for such there will be a chastisement grievous.” (Al-Shura: 42)

The Qur’an also states,

“Think not that Allah doth heed the deeds of those who do wrong. He but giveth them respect against a Day when the eyes will fixedly stare in horror, they running forward with necks outstretched, their heads uplifted; their gaze returning not towards them, and their hearts a (gaping) void!” (Ibrahim: 42-43)

And,

“Nor did they forbid one another the iniquities which they committed: evil indeed were the deeds which they did” (Al-Ma’idah: 79)

Guidance:

Go you and your brother with My signs and do not, you both, slacken and become weak in My Remembrance. Go, both of you, to Pharaoh, verily he has transgressed (all bounds in disbelief and disobedience and behaved as an arrogant and as a tyrant). And speak to him mildly, perhaps he may accept admonition or fear (God). (Quran 20: 43&44)

{Hold fast, all together, by the rope which Allah (stretches out for you), and be not divided among yourselves.} (Aal-Imran 3:103)

And again:

{The Believers, men and women, are protectors one of another: they enjoin what is just, and forbid what is evil: they observe regular prayers, practice regular charity, and obey Allah and His Apostle. On them will Allah pour His mercy: for Allah is Exalted in power, Wise.} (At-Tawbah 9:71)

{And why should ye not fight in the cause of Allah and of those who, being weak, are ill-treated (and oppressed)? — Men, women, and children, whose cry is: "Our Lord! Rescue us from this town, whose people are oppressors; and raise for us from thee one who will protect; and raise for us from thee one who will help!} (An-Nisaa 4:75)

Dua:

(7) They said: "In Allah do we put out trust. Our Lord! make us not a trial for those who practise oppression;

( سورة يونس , Yunus, Chapter #10, Verse #85)

Success:

This is the Book (the Qur’an) whereof there is no doubt, a guidance to those who are God-conscious (muttaqîn). Who believe in the un-seen and perform the prayer (s?alâh) and spend out of what We have provided for them. And who believe in what We have sent down to you [O Muhammad!] and in that which was sent down before you, and they believe with certainty in Hereafter. They are on true guidance from their Lord and they are the SUCCESSFUL. (2: 1-5)

The Believers have indeed attained true SUCCESS: those who humble themselves in their prayers (s?alâh); who avoid whatever is vain and frivolous; who pay zakâh, who strictly guard their private parts, save from their spouses […]. But those who seek beyond that, are transgressors. [And] who are true to their trusts and their covenants; who guard their prayers. These are indeed the inheritors who shall inherit the Paradise and they shall dwell therein forever. (23: 1-11)

Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) received the divine guidance (the Qur’an) that is often in summary form, without details. He, by divine inspiration, elaborated all such summary commands and exemplified them by his own actions. Thus, without following him neither one can understand the essence of Qur’anic guidance nor one can put Qur’anic commands into practice. Therefore, following the Prophet Muhammad is an essential part of the Qur’anic SUCCESS paradigm:

And those who follow the Messenger, the unlettered Prophet, […] He enjoins them to do good and forbid evil, and makes lawful to them the good things and unlawful the impure things. And he relieves them of their heavy burden and the shackles that were upon them. Thus those who believe in him and who honor and support him and follow the light which has been sent down with him are the prosperous. (7: 156)

Tell people: ‘If you indeed love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and will forgive your sins. (3: 30)

‘What Allah has bestowed on His Messenger (and taken away) from the people of the townships,- belongs to Allah,- to His Messenger and to kindred and orphans, the needy and the wayfarer; In order that it may not (merely) make a circuit between the wealthy among you. So take what the Messenger assigns to you, and deny yourselves that which he withholds from you. And fear Allah; for Allah is strict in Punishment.’ Al-Quran (59:7) (Quran360 for Android)

‘Allah has promised, to those among you who believe and work righteous deeds, that He will, of a surety, grant them in the land, inheritance (of power), as He granted it to those before them; that He will establish in authority their religion – the one which He has chosen for them; and that He will change (their state), after the fear in which they (lived), to one of security and peace: ‘They will worship Me (alone) and not associate aught with Me. ‘If any do reject Faith after this, they are rebellious and wicked.’ Al-Quran (24:55) (Quran360 for Android)

As has been hinted in the beginning of this discourse, this means to warn the hypocrites that the promise of Allah to bestow successorship in the land is not meant for those people who are Muslims only in name, but for those who are true in faith, pious in character, sincere in devotion and who follow Allah’s religion in letter and spirit eschewing every tinge of shirk. Those who lack these qualities and pay mere lip service to Islam are neither worthy of this promise nor its addressees. Therefore they should entertain no hope of having any share in it.

Some people interpret Khilafat (successorship in the land) to mean political power and authority, and conversely conclude that whosoever possesses power and authority in the land is necessarily a true believer and a follower of Allah’s approved religion and His devotee, free from all traces of shirk. Then in order to get support for their wrong conclusion, they even change the very meanings of faith, virtue, divine creed, Allah’s worship, idolatry, etc. to suit their interpretation. This is the worst distortion of the meaning of the Quran, even worse than what the Jews and Christians did with their Scriptures. This interpretation of the verse tends to destroy the very message of the Quran. If successorship in the land were to mean mere power and authority in the land; then all those people who wielded power and authority in the world, or wield it today, would fit in with the description contained in the verse, even if they denied Allah, revelations, Prophethood, life in the Hereafter, and were involved in all kinds of major sins like usury, adultery, drinking and gambling. Now if all such people are regarded as pious believers and considered worthy of holding the high offices because of their qualities as such, then faith would imply simple obedience to physical laws and virtue would mean making use of those laws effectively and successfully. Allah’s approved religion would mean making maximum progress in the fields of industry and trade, commerce and politics by achieving excellence in the physical sciences; devotion to Allah would mean abiding by the rules and procedures which are naturally useful and essential for success in individual and collective enterprises; and shirk would mean adopting a few harmful methods also along with the useful procedures and rules. But the question is: Would a person who has studied the Quran with an open heart and mind ever believe that the terms faith, righteous deeds, true religion, devotion to Allah, tauhid and shirk as used in the Quran really mean this? As a matter of fact, such a meaning can be understood either by the one who has never made an intelligent study of the Quran as a whole, but has picked up verses from here and there and given them his own biased meaning according to preconceived notions and theories, or by the one who has read the Quran through but has all along been holding all those verses as wrong and absurd, which invite people to accept Allah as the One and only Lord, His revelations as the only source of guidance, His Messengers as the only true guides worthy of absolute obedience, and which demand not only belief in the lifeafter- death, but also state that the people who would consider success in the worldly life as their sole and ultimate objective, without any idea of their accountability in the Hereafter, would be deprived of real success. The Quran has repeated these themes so frequently in diverse ways and in such clear and plain language that it is difficult to believe that anybody who studies it honestly can ever be involved in those misunderstandings in which the modern interpreters of this verse have been involved. The fact is that they have misconstrued Khilafat and Istikhlaf (successorship) after their own notions, which cannot be held as correct by anybody who has some knowledge of the Quran.

The Quran has used Khilafat and Istikhlaf in the following three meanings and the context determines in which particular meaning it has been used in a particular place:

(a) To bear the authority delegated by Allah. The whole human race is Allah’s Khalifah (successor) on the earth in this sense.

(b) To acknowledge Allah as the Supreme Sovereign and to use His delegated powers and authority in accordance with His law. In this sense only a pious and righteous believer can be a Khalifah, because he alone can discharge the responsibilities of Khilafat truly. On the other hand, a disbeliever and sinner cannot be Khalifah: he is rather a rebel against Allah, because he abuses the power and authority delegated by Allah in disobedience to Him in the land bestowed by Him.

(c) The succession of one ruling nation in the land after the fall of another nation. The meanings (a) and (b) imply vicegerency while (c) implies successorship. Both these meanings of Khilafat are well known and recognized in the Arabic lexicon.

Now anybody who reads this verse in this context cannot have any doubt that the word Khilafat has been used here for the government which discharges the responsibilities of Allah’s vicegerency strictly in accordance with Allah’s law, and not in accordance with mere physical laws of the world. That is why, not to speak of the disbelievers, even the hypocrites, who professed faith in Islam, are being excluded from the purview of Allah’s promise. That is why it is being stated that true and righteous believers only are worthy of this promise. That is why it is being averred that the establishment of Khilafat will result in the establishment of Islam, Allah’s approved religion, on strong foundations; and that is why the condition being put forward for earning this favor is that the believers should remain steadfast in their faith and devotion to Allah avoiding every tinge of shirk. To remove this promise from its right context and apply it on the international scene to any power is sheer absurdity and nonsense. (For further details, see E. N. 99 of Surah Al-Anbiya also).

Another thing that needs to be mentioned here is that the direct addressees of this promise were the Muslims living in the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him) though indirectly it applies to the future generations of Muslims as well. When in the beginning this promise was held out by Allah, the Muslims were living in a state of fear and Islam had not yet taken firm roots even in Hejaz. A few years later this state of fear not only gave way to peace and equanimity but Islam also spread outside Arabia to large parts of Africa and Asia, and it became firmly established not only in its own land of birth but outside it as well. This is a historical proof of the fact that Allah fulfilled His promise in the times of Abu Bakr, Umar and Uthman (may Allah he pleased with them all). No right thinking person, therefore, can have any doubt that the Khilafat of the first three Caliphs has been authenticated by the Quran itself and Allah Himself has testified to their being pious believers. If anybody still has a doubt, he should read the address of AIi in Nahjal Balaghah, which was meant to dissuade Umar from going personally to fight against the Iranians. He said:

Our success in this work is not dependent on numerical strength; it is the religion of Allah for which He Himself has opened ways. We are grateful to Him for His help and succor which has enabled us to serve its cause till it has been raised to its present glory. Allah Himself has said: Allah has promised to those among you, who believe and do righteous deeds that He will make them successors in the land. Allah will certainly fulfill this promise and will help the armies of Islam. The position of the Caliph in Islam is like that of the string in a necklace of pearls. If the string breaks, the pearls scatter away and the order is destroyed. Once scattered and dispersed, it becomes difficult to collect them again. No doubt the Arabs are small in number, but they have been increased by Islam and strengthened by unity. You should therefore stick to Madinah like the pivot and make the grindstone of Arabia rotate about you and guide the war-machine from here. Once you leave this place, your entire organization will begin to crumble, then you will start feeling more worried about the dangers behind than the enemies in front. Moreover, the Iranians will concentrate their whole attention on you, and will like to exterminate you, taking you as the main and only hurdle in their way to victory. As for your apprehension that they have come out in much greater strength, I would say that hitherto we have been fighting them not merely on the strength of numbers, but have been putting them to rout on the strength of Allah’s help and succor. Any discerning reader can see for himself as to which side is being held by Ali as worthy of Allah’s promise with regard to successorship in the land.

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