Complete security [in the lands] cannot be sound except through two affairs and they are:
[(a) التطبيق لشرع الله تعالى – Application of Allaah’s (The Most High) Sharee’ah]
[(b) السمع والطاعة لولاة الأمور- Listening to those in charge of the affairs and obeying them (i.e. the rulers)]
Indeed, the Messenger (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) clarified this (affair) which a Muslim is in need of in his life. Irbaad Saariyah (radiyallaahu-anhu) said: “The Messenger of Allah (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) gave us an admonition after the morning prayer –an admonition that made our hearts fearful and our eyes tearful. So a man said: Indeed is this a farewell sermon, so what do you advise us?” He said, “I enjoin you to have Taqwa of Allah and that you listen and obey, even if an Abyssinian slave (is made a ruler over you); for indeed he among you who lives long enough will see many differences. So beware of newly invented maters (in the religion) because indeed it is misguidance. And whoever among you witnesses that, then it is obligated on him to adhere to my Sunnah and the Sunnah of the rightly guided khulafaa, adhere to it with your molar teeth. [Reported by Ahmad 3/126]
Indeed, this hadeeth determines the foundations of security in Islaam and they are: Firstly: Taqwallaah [Fear of Allaah (The Most High)] based on its complete and comprehensive meaning. Secondly: Listening to those in charge of the affairs and obeying them (i.e. rulers in what is good and not to rebel against them even if they oppress and commit tyranny).
Therefore, through fear of Allaah, a Muslim’s relationship with Allaah becomes upright, likewise his relationship with himself, his neighbours and his relationship with everything around him. And without Allaah’s Sharee’ah, destruction and depravity will occur. Indeed, Allaah (The Mighty and Majestic) warned the one who abandons His Sharee’ah and disobeys His Messenger, saying:
وَضَرَبَ اللَّهُ مَثَلًا قَرْيَةً كَانَتْ آمِنَةً مُّطْمَئِنَّةً يَأْتِيهَا رِزْقُهَا رَغَدًا مِّن كُلِّ مَكَانٍ فَكَفَرَتْ بِأَنْعُمِ اللَّهِ فَأَذَاقَهَا اللَّهُ لِبَاسَ الْجُوعِ وَالْخَوْفِ بِمَا كَانُوا يَصْنَعُونَ
And Allah puts forward the example of a township (Makkah), that dwelt secure and well content; its provision coming to it in abundance from every place, but it (its people) denied the Favours of Allah (with ungratefulness). So Allah made it taste the extreme of hunger (famine) and fear, because of that (evil, i.e. denying Prophet Muhammad) which they (its people) used to do. [16:112]
Through listening to the rulers and obeying them, all affairs of the person’s life in his society will be a state of normality. Listening to the rulers and obeying them enters into the subject matter of Taqwa (fear of Allaah).
Al-Hasan Al-Basri (rahimahullaah ) used to say: Indeed, Al-Hajjaaj is the punishment of Allaah; so do not repel the punishment of Allaah with your own hands. Rather you must submit and show humility because indeed Allaah (The Most High) said:
وَلَقَدْ أَخَذْنَاهُم بِالْعَذَابِ فَمَا اسْتَكَانُوا لِرَبِّهِمْ وَمَا يَتَضَرَّعُونَ
“And indeed We seized them with punishment, but they humbled not themselves to their Lord, nor did they invoke (Allaah) with submission to Him.’’ [23:76]
Talq Bin Habeeb (rahimahullaah) used to say: Guard against fitna through Taqwa; so it was said to him, “Summarize (the meaning) of Taqwa for us.’’ So he said, ‘’It is act in obedience to Allah, with a light from Allah (i.e. Eemaan) and hoping for Allaah’s Mercy. And that you abandon disobedience to Allah with a light from Allah and fearing the punishment of Allah. [Reported by Ibn Abee Shaybah 11/33 and Ibnul Mubaarak in Az-Zuhd 473]
So you find a person to whom the description of security is firmly (established) and he increases in his perception of it due to due to his fear of Allaah The Most High), and he is eager to listen to the rulers and obey them; but if he falls short (in Taqwa), his perception of security becomes deficient.
When this Taqwa is actualised, then he will receive the promise Allaah mentioned [in Surah An-Noor]. Allaah said:
وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مِنكُمْ وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ لَيَسْتَخْلِفَنَّهُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ كَمَا اسْتَخْلَفَ الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِهِمْ وَلَيُمَكِّنَنَّ لَهُمْ دِينَهُمُ الَّذِي ارْتَضَىٰ لَهُمْ وَلَيُبَدِّلَنَّهُم مِّن بَعْدِ خَوْفِهِمْ أَمْنًا ۚ يَعْبُدُونَنِي لَا يُشْرِكُونَ بِي شَيْئًا ۚ وَمَن كَفَرَ بَعْدَ ذَٰلِكَ فَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْفَاسِقُونَ
Allah has promised those among you who believe, and do righteous good deeds, that He will certainly grant them succession to (the present rulers) in the earth, as He granted it to those before them, and that He will grant them the authority to practise their religion, that which He has chosen for them (i.e. Islam). And He will surely give them in exchange a safe security after their fear (provided) they (believers) worship Me and do not associate anything (in worship) with Me. But whoever disbelieved after this, they are the Fasiqun (rebellious, disobedient to Allah). [24:55]
Indeed, it is known by necessity in the religion of Islaam that the religion cannot (be established) without a Jamaa’ah and there cannot be a Jamaa’ah without a leader, and there cannot be a leader except through listening to him and obeying (him in what is good). And lack of obedience to the ruler and putting oneself before him is from the greatest causes of corrupting the land and the people, and (from the causes of) turning away from the path of guidance and uprightness. Al Hasan Al Basri (rahimahullaah) said: By Allaah! The religion cannot be established except by way of rulers even if they commit tyranny and oppression; by Allaah! Due to the many affairs that Allaah rectifies through them more than what they corrupt.’’
Ibn Rajab (rahimahullaah) said: There is good fortune in the worldly life for listening to rulers and obeying them (i.e. in that which is good and not to rebel against them even if they commit oppression and tyranny). And by way of it (i.e. obedience to the rulers), the beneficial affairs in relation to the livelihood of the people are organized, and they used it as an aid by way of which they manifest their religion and obey their Lord.
Disobedience to the rulers and putting oneself before them through fighting or other than it (is an act that is tantamount) to disobeying and opposing Allaah and His Messenger. It is (tantamount) to opposing that which Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaa’ah were upon – the pious predecessors.
[Source: Silsilah Ar-Rasaa-il Al-Manhajiyyah Fin Nushi War’irshaad Wat-Taw’iyah’ pages 11-14 ‘ by Shaikh Muhammad Baazmool (may Allaah preserve him); Abridged and slightly paraphrased]