In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy
 Among Those Affairs of Guidance Regarding the Fitan
Shaikh Muhammad Baazmool [may Allaah preserve him] said: The Messenger of Allaah [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] and what has been reported from him is the authority to which [one] must return in order to understand this affair [i.e. the subject matter of Fitan]. Therefore, one cannot return to the following affairs: (a)The narrations of the ahlul kitaab; (b) Opinions and dreams; (c) Weak and fabricated ahaadeeth; (d) Qiyaas and (e) Political, Economic or socialist analysis-since the ahaadeeth regarding the Fitan, the portents of the Hour and what is to take place of strife are from the (affairs) of the Religion, and the Religion is Tawqeefee (i.e. its source can only be established from the divine texts of the Qur’aan and the authentic Sunnah).
Therefore, all that is reported from the Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) with sound chains of transmission concerning (affairs) that are to take place, then it is obligated on every Muslim to have Eemaan in it, whether it appeals to his intellect or not. And this is the reality of one’s testimony that he (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) is the Messenger of Allaah (Glorified Be He). Allaah (The Most High) said:
وَمَا يَنْطِقُ عَنِ الْهَوَىٰ
إِنْ هُوَ إِلَّا وَحْيٌ يُوحَىٰ
Nor does he (Muhammad) speak of (his own) desire. It is only an Inspiration that is inspired.” 53:3-4
And Allaah (The Most High) said:
وَمَا آتَاكُمُ الرَّسُولُ فَخُذُوهُ وَمَا نَهَاكُمْ عَنْهُ فَانْتَهُو
And whatsoever the Messenger (Muhammad) gives you, take it, and whatsoever he forbids you, abstain (from it)” 59:7
Umar (radiyallaahu-anhu) reported that: One day while we were sitting with the messenger of Allah there appeared before us a man whose clothes were exceedingly white and whose hair was exceedingly black; no signs of journeying were to be seen on him and none of us knew him. He walked up and sat down by the prophet. Resting his knees against his and placing the palms of his hands on his thighs, he said:”O Muhammad, tell me about Islam”. The messenger of Allah said: “Islam is to testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah, to perform the prayers, to pay the zakat, to fast in Ramadan, and to make the pilgrimage to the House if you are able to do so.” He said: “You have spoken rightly’’ And we were amazed at him asking him and saying that he had spoken rightly. He said: “Then tell me about Iman.”He said:”It is to believe in Allah, His angels, His books, His messengers, and the Last Day, and to believe in divine destiny, both the good and the evil thereof.” He said: “You have spoken rightly”. He said: “Then tell me about Ihsan.” He said: “It is to worship Allah as though you are seeing Him, and while you see Him not yet truly He sees you”. He said: “Then tell me about the Hour”. He said: “The one questioned about it knows no better than the questioner.” He said: “Then tell me about its signs.” He said: “That the slave-girl will give birth to her mistress and that you will see the barefooted, naked, destitute herdsman competing in constructing lofty buildings.” Then he took himself off and I stayed for a time. Then he said: “O Umar, do you know who the questioner was?” I said: “Allah and His messenger know best”. He said: “He was Gibreel (Gabriel), who came to you to teach you your religion.” [Reported by Muslim. Kitaab al-Eemaan. Chapter: Imaan, Islaam and Ihsaan. Hadeeth Number: 8]
The testimony in this hadeeth is the statement of the Prophet: “He was Gibreel, who came to you to teach you your religion.” And the guiding principle in the above hadeeth is that he (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) asked a question about the Hour and its circumstances, and he established that it is something included in the affairs of the Religion. The affairs of Fitan and its circumstances, and the affairs of strife are all related to the (portents) of the Hour. Therefore, it is included in the Religion and it is not for anyone to speak about it based on his own (opinions, views, analysis or interpretations etc). [Ref 1: End of Quote]
 Referring Back To the Senior Scholars in Times of Fitan and Affairs Related To Universal Public Safety, And Not To Spread News in Haste
Allaah (The Most High) said:
وَإِذَا جَاءَهُمْ أَمْرٌ مِّنَ الْأَمْنِ أَوِ الْخَوْفِ أَذَاعُوا بِهِ ۖ وَلَوْ رَدُّوهُ إِلَى الرَّسُولِ وَإِلَىٰ أُولِي الْأَمْرِ مِنْهُمْ لَعَلِمَهُ الَّذِينَ يَسْتَنبِطُونَهُ مِنْهُمْ ۗ وَلَوْلَا فَضْلُ اللَّهِ عَلَيْكُمْ وَرَحْمَتُهُ لَاتَّبَعْتُمُ الشَّيْطَانَ إِلَّا قَلِيلًا
When there comes to them some matter touching (public) safety or fear, they make it known (among the people), if only they had referred it to the Messenger or to those charged with authority among them, the proper investigators would have understood it from them (directly). Had it not been for the Grace and Mercy of Allaah upon you, you would have followed Shaitaan (Satan), save a few of you.'[4:83]
Imaam Ibn Katheer (rahimahullaah) said: ”In this ayah (there) is a rebuke against the one who rushes towards affairs and then gives news about it before verifying it – circulates and spreads it -and perhaps there is no credibility in it.”
Therefore, this ayah obligates verification and clarification when (news) is heard, as Ibn katheer (rahimahullaah) mentioned. It rebukes the one who hastens in transmitting and spreading (news) before verifying its credibility.
This ayah (also) guides to another affair and that is (important news touching public safety and fear) is to be relayed to those in authority from amongst the Scholars and the Rulers and not to the common people, for there is no benefit in transmitting it to the common people; rather what is of benefit is that it is transmitted to the people in authority because they are those with a sound understanding of the affairs and the benefits that are extracted from them. They are the ones with the ability to avert the harmful affairs.
Ibn Katheer then mentioned a number of narrations about being careful about hastiness and lack of verifying news- and from them is a narration by Abu Hurairah (radiyallaahu-anhu) that the Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) said: ‘’It is enough for a man to prove himself a liar when he goes on narrating whatever he hears’’.
And Mugheerah bin Shubah (radiyallaahu-anhu) said, ‘’The Messenger of Allaah (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) forbade Qeel Wal Qaal (i.e. so and so said)’’. Ibn Katheer (rahimahullaah) said, ‘’It is the one who narrates a great deal of that which the people say without verification, contemplation and clarification’’.
Then Ibn Katheer (rahimahullaah) stated:
The hadith of Umar (radiyallaahu-anhu) collected by Bukhaari and Muslim should be mentioned here; when Umar was told that the Messenger of Allaah (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) divorced his wives, he left his house and entered the mosque, where he found the people talking about it; so he could not endure waiting and ask for the permission of the Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) to speak to him; then Umar asked the Prophet, saying, ‘‘Have you divorced your women?’’ The Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) said, ‘No’. So Umar said, I said ‘Allaahu Akbar……’
And in the narration collected by Imaam Muslim, Umar said, I asked, ‘Have you divorced them?’ The Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) said, ‘No’. So I stood by the door of the mosque and shouted with a loud voice, saying, ‘The Messenger of Allaah did not divorce his wives’. Then the ayah (i.e. Ayah 83, Surah Nisaa) was revealed. Umar said, ‘I investigated this affair properly’ (i.e. whether the Prophet did divorce his wives).
Imaam As-Sadi [rahimahullaah] said about this Aayaah [i.e. An-Nisaa 83]: This is a moral conduct [commanded by Allaah] to His slaves – that they do not do this [i.e. hasten to spread news]. And it is obligated on them that when there comes to them an affair from the important affairs – matters related to a universal benefit for the people, public safety and those affairs on which depends the sorrow or happiness of the believers, or an affair of public fear which may bring about calamity upon them- that they should verify the [news of that affair] and not to be hasty in spreading it; rather they should refer it back to the Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] and to those in authority- the people of sound opinions, the people of knowledge; those who can give sound advice, the people of intelligence and those who approach affairs with calmness, and they are those who know what is of overriding benefit and that which is in opposition to it [i.e. the scholars]. So, if they see that disseminating such news will bring about an overriding benefit for the Muslims, strengthen them, bring about happiness and make them vigilant over their enemies, then they would disseminate such news; but if they see that there is no overriding benefit in disseminating such news, or that there is benefit in it, but there is more harm in doing so; then they would not circulate such news. That is why Allaah stated:
وَلَوْ رَدُّوهُ إِلَى الرَّسُولِ وَإِلَىٰ أُولِي الْأَمْرِ مِنْهُمْ لَعَلِمَهُ الَّذِينَ يَسْتَنبِطُونَهُ مِنْهُمْ
‘’If only they had referred it to the Messenger or to those charged with authority among them, the proper investigators would have understood it from them (directly)’’- Meaning: They would have derived from it [the proper cause of action] through contemplation and through their correct opinions and rightly guided sciences.
Therefore, in this there is proof regarding a principle related to a moral conduct, that when an [important affair] from the [important affairs] suddenly appears, it is obligatory to refer it to those who are competent in the affair and one should not put himself forward before them, for that is closer to correctness and [safer] in preventing mistakes. And in this, there is a prohibition against being hasty in circulating news [that is related important affairs of public safety or fear] and a command to contemplate before speaking- to look into the affair, as to whether it is an affair of overriding benefit to be dealt with, or whether it should be avoided if it does not carry an [overriding benefit].
[وَلَوۡلَا فَضۡلُ ٱللَّهِ عَلَيۡڪُمۡ وَرَحۡمَتُهُ – Had it not been for the Grace and Mercy of Allah upon you]- Meaning: by way granting you the ability to act upon righteousness, instructed you with moral conducts and taught you that which you never knew, then [لَٱتَّبَعۡتُمُ ٱلشَّيۡطَـٰنَ إِلَّا قَلِيلاً۬ – you would have followed Shaitan (Satan), save a few of you].
 Scholars and Those Whom They Recommend For The Task Are The Ones Obligated With the Task Of Unveiling The Plots and Plans of The Enemies and Not The Conspiracy Theorists, Rationalists etc
Shaikh Rabee Bin Haadee Al-Madkhalee (may Allaah preserve him) says:
So it is not permissible for the Ulamaa to remain heedless of their plans (i.e. the enemies of Islaam), their actions, their publications, their missionary activities and their various calls (to the Muslims). And also the various poisons they are infusing – which are in opposition to the Quraan and the Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) and his Sunnah. And nor of what plans they have for (the destruction of) the beliefs and methodologies of Islaam. It is not permissible either, to remain heedless of their concentrated efforts to Christianize or secularize the Muslim youth. And along with that, the Muslim youth and the students are not able to oppose this plan and strategy. Rather it is necessary that the distinguished Ulamaa – those who are experienced and shrewd – it is for such people, in all the places to undertake this duty. So it is obligatory for some of the intelligent and ingenious people from the field of Aqeedah to be mobilised for opposing these plans. And likewise it is a must that the intelligent and distinguished from amongst the specialists in the Sunnah – that they be mobilised for the refutation of these and similarly the eminent and distinguished from amongst those in the fields of Orientalism for the refutation of the plans of the Orientalists.” (Ahl ul-Hadeeth, p.102)
He also says:
“I myself believe that it is a benefit – rather it is of necessity – that we know what the enemies are planning for us, and that it is necessary for us to prepare (ourselves in strength) to destroy their plans. However, I do not exaggerate in this matter, rather my view is the view of our Ulamaa and they have all agreed upon this – that amongst the obligatory matters there are some that are Fard Ain and others that are Fard Kifaayah – and even if knowing the state of the enemies is harmful – it is still necessary for us to know it – but it is treated as Fard Kifaayah. When some attend to it, then the harm is removed from the rest” up until he said: “So I consider that there is no criticism for the Ulamaa and the students of knowledge who take great concern for preserving the Shareeah of Allaah – in terms of the Book, the Sunnah and its understanding – for this is one of the duties of the Kifaayah actions. And I believe that these people are more superior, noble, truthful and of more benefit to Islaam than those who are weak in their knowledge of the religion of Allaah or those who have no share in acquainting themselves with it.” [Ref 3. End of quote]
[Ref 1: Source: Mawqiful Muslim Minal Fitan. Page15-18’ by Shaikh Muhammad Baazmool. Abridged and slightly paraphrased]
[Ref 2: Al-Fitnah Wa Mawqiful Muslim Minhaa’ 78-83 by Shaikh Muhammad Aqeel. Abridged and slightly paraphrased]
[Ref 3. An excerpt from an article at www.salafipublications.com titled: The Salafis and Looking into the Affairs of the Ummah]
In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy
Imaam Abdul Bin Baaz [rahimahullaah] said: The student of knowledge is very eager not to hide anything he knows. He is eager to clarify the truth and refute the opponents of the Religion of Islaam. He is neither lackadaisical nor does he seek to escape.
When the opponents of Islaam appear with that which obscures and defames Islaam, he brings forth refutation against them by writing, by word of mouth and other than that.
He does not seek to escape, rather he comes forward at the appropriate time to aid the truth and refutes the opponents of Islaam by writing and other than it- by means of the radio, the newspapers or TV, or through any means he can.
He does not hide what he has of knowledge, rather he writes, gives khutbah and refutes the people of innovation and other than them from the opponents of Islaam based on what Allaah has bestowed upon him of strength – in accordance with his knowledge and that which Allaah has made easy for him. Allaah [The Most High] said:
إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ يَكۡتُمُونَ مَآ أَنزَلۡنَا مِنَ ٱلۡبَيِّنَـٰتِ وَٱلۡهُدَىٰ مِنۢ بَعۡدِ مَا بَيَّنَّـٰهُ لِلنَّاسِ فِى ٱلۡكِتَـٰبِۙ أُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ يَلۡعَنُہُمُ ٱللَّهُ وَيَلۡعَنُہُمُ ٱللَّـٰعِنُونَ
إِلَّا ٱلَّذِينَ تَابُواْ وَأَصۡلَحُواْ وَبَيَّنُواْ فَأُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ أَتُوبُ عَلَيۡہِمۡۚ وَأَنَا ٱلتَّوَّابُ ٱلرَّحِيمُ
Verily, those who conceal the clear proofs, evidences and the guidance, which We have sent down, after We have made it clear for the people in the Book, they are the ones cursed by Allaah and cursed by the cursers. Except those who repent and do righteous deeds, and openly declare (the truth which they concealed). These, I will accept their repentance. And I am the One Who accepts repentance, the Most Merciful” [2:159-160]
[Source: An excerpt from a Booklet of the Shaikh titled:
Responsibilities of the Student of Knowledge (page: 15-16)]
In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy
Imaam Barbahaaree [rahimahullaah] said: ‘It is not permitted for a man to say, ‘So and so is a person of the sunnah’ until he knows that he combines the characteristics of the Sunnah, so it is not said of him, ‘a person of the Sunnah’ until he combines all the Sunnah.'
Shaikh Saaleh Al-Fawzaan [may Allaah preserve him] commented on the above statement of Imaam Barbahaaree saying:
Do not give recommended to a person and a praise of him, except based on knowledge, lest the people become deceived by your praise of him, whilst he is not what [you have stated about him]. So when his real affair and path is clear to you, his knowledge and steadfastness; then you can give him recommendation. As for giving out praise and recommendation whilst not knowing of anything about him, then this is a dangerous recommendation through which the people will be deceived by this person.
Had only those who give commendations to the people stopped at that [i.e. put it in its proper place], then they would not give recommendation, except for one who fulfils the conditions of (receiving) recommendation because recommendation is a ‘Witness’; so, if the recommendation is not correct it will be a false witness.
And concerning the statement of Imaam Barbahaaree: ‘until he knows that he combines the characteristics of the Sunnah’ Shaikh Saaleh Al-Fawzaan commented on the above statement saying: The characteristics of the Sunnah are to be in Aqeedah, Knowledge and adherence to the Salafus Saaleh. But if there is not in him except a single characteristic of the (sunnah), then he is not judged to be from Ahlus Sunnah on the basis of a single characteristic or one thing, so what about the one who does not have anything from that? [End of quote][Ref 1]
The Correct stance towards the differing of the scholars concerning
Jarh and Tadeel-by Shaikh Ubaid [may Allaah preserve him]
Ref 1: It-haaful Qaaree Bitta’liqaat Alaa Sharhis Sunnah Lil Imaam Barbahaaree
Vol: 2, page:275-276
In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy
Al-Hasan al-Basree [rahimahullaah] said: “By Allaah! Never have a people sought advice except that they were guided to the best of what was available to them.” Then he recited [the statement of Allaah]: [وَأَمۡرُهُمۡ شُورَىٰ بَيۡنَہُمۡ – And (the Believers) who (conduct) their affairs by mutual consultation] [42:38] [Ref 1]
Allaah [The Mighty and Majestic] commanded His Messenger Muhammad [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] to consult his companions in some affairs. Allaah [Glorified be He and free is He from all imperfections] said: [وَشَاوِرۡهُمۡ فِى ٱلۡأَمۡرِۖ فَإِذَا عَزَمۡتَ فَتَوَكَّلۡ عَلَى ٱللَّهِۚ – and consult them in the affairs. Then when you have taken a decision, put your trust in Allah] [3:159]
He [i.e. the Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam)] is the example to be followed by the Ummah, therefore when it is the case that Allaah commanded him [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] to consult his companions, then there is even a greater reason that the Muslims are in need of consultation amongst themselves. When a difficulty that is related to a Muslim’s religious and worldly affairs occurs, then indeed it is fitting that he consults someone whom he considers reliable, wise, truthful and sincere. He examines [the advice] given by that person, then he makes a choice – either to take that advice or decides not to take it based on what he is satisfied with, in relation to his personal affairs.
The hadeeth places emphasis on the fact that consultation guides to the best outcomes, and due to this it is said: ”The one who consults [others] does not regret [thereafter InShaaAllaah] and the one who performs Istikhaarah will not fail [to achieve good]”. Both Istikhaarah and consultation are legislated and a lot of good is achieved by way of them, as opposed to when affairs are pursued in a rigid and haphazard manner, for indeed this might lead to regret and harm. [Ref 2]
Your feedback is welcomed to improve the content of this article BaarakAllaahu Feekum
[Ref 1: Adab Al-Mufrad no.258, declared saheeh by Imaam Albaanee]
[Ref 2: Awnul Ahadis Samad Sharh Al-Adab Al-Mufrad’ 1/285’ (abridged and slightly paraphrased]
In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy
Some of The Means to Safety For The Ummah
Imaam Maalik [rahimahullaah] said:
لنْ َيصْلُحَ آخِرُ هَذِهِ الْأمة الَّا مَا أَصْلَحَ أَوَّلَهَا
The latter part of this Ummah [i.e. those who will come after the Salaf] will not be rectified except by way of that which rectified its earlier part [i.e. the Salaf].’’
Therefore, there can be no return to safety, security and strength unless we return to that which rectified the early generations of Islaam. Shaikh Saaleh Al-Fawzaan said, ‘’And from those first and foremost means to safety and security in this life and the next is means to safety in this life and the next, is that the Ummah has to be upon a sound Aqeedah – singling out Allaah in worship and abandoning everything that is worshipped besides Allaah – not invoking tombs, graves, shrines and other false objects of worship, rather worshipping Allaah alone without any partner is the greatest and first and foremost means to safety in this life and next. Allaah [The Most High] said:
[ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ وَلَمۡ يَلۡبِسُوٓاْ إِيمَـٰنَهُم بِظُلۡمٍ أُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ لَهُمُ ٱلۡأَمۡنُ وَهُم مُّهۡتَدُونَ – It is those who believe and confuse not their belief with Zulm (wrong), for them (only) there is security and they are the guided. [‘6:82]
The meaning of [ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ -Those who believe]: Belief is Tawheed [pure Islamic Monotheism] – to worship Allaah [Alone] and keep away from worshipping others besides Him.
And regarding the statement of Allaah [ وَلَمۡ يَلۡبِسُوٓاْ إِيمَـٰنَهُم بِظُلۡمٍ- And confuse not their belief with zulm]- Meaning: They do not mix their belief in Tawheed with Zulm [i.e. Shirk], because Tawheed is corrupted when mixed with shirk. Hence, Tawheed can never be actualised with the presence of shirk, because two opposites cannot come together. [Ref 1]
Therefore, Zulm is Shirk, just as the Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] explained when this ayah caused some unease for the sahaabah. They [i.e. the sahaabah] said: ”O Messenger of Allaah! Which of us has not committed Zulm [i.e. wrong] against himself?” He [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] said: It is not as you think, for indeed Zulm means shirk. Haven’t you heard the saying of the righteous slave [i.e. Luqmaan]?
[ يَـٰبُنَىَّ لَا تُشۡرِكۡ بِٱللَّهِۖ إِنَّ ٱلشِّرۡكَ لَظُلۡمٌ عَظِيمٌ۬ – O my son! Join not in worship others with Allaah. Verily! Joining others in worship with Allaah is a great Zulm (wrong) indeed. [31:13]
Therefore, the intent behind Zulm in this ayah is Shirk. The one safe from shirk will have safety in this life and the next. He will receive guidance for being upon the truth.
And Allaah [Glorified be He and free is He from all imperfections] said:
وَعَدَ ٱللَّهُ ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ مِنكُمۡ وَعَمِلُواْ ٱلصَّـٰلِحَـٰتِ لَيَسۡتَخۡلِفَنَّهُمۡ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ ڪَمَا ٱسۡتَخۡلَفَ ٱلَّذِينَ مِن قَبۡلِهِمۡ وَلَيُمَكِّنَنَّ لَهُمۡ دِينَہُمُ ٱلَّذِى ٱرۡتَضَىٰ لَهُمۡ وَلَيُبَدِّلَنَّہُم مِّنۢ بَعۡدِ خَوۡفِهِمۡ أَمۡنً۬اۚ يَعۡبُدُونَنِى لَا يُشۡرِكُونَ بِى شَيۡـًٔ۬اۚ
Allaah 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 land, as He granted it to those before them, and that He will grant them the authority to practice their religion which He has chosen for them (i.e. Islaam). And He will surely give them in exchange a safe security after their fear (provided) that they (believers) worship Me and do not associate anything (in worship) with Me. [24:55]
These great promises [mentioned in the above ayah] cannot be accomplished except by way of this condition that is [يَعۡبُدُونَنِى لَا يُشۡرِكُونَ بِى شَيۡـًٔ۬ا (provided) they (i.e. the believers) worship Me (Allaah) and do not associate anything (in worship) with Me.
If this condition is fulfilled, then these noble promises of Allaah will be attained. Certainly, the believers will be granted succession to [the present rulers] in the land. Allaah will grant them authority to practice their religion, which He has chosen for them (i.e. Islaam) and will surely give them in exchange a safe security after their fear. These great aims [or goals] cannot be achieved except by way of Tawheed, and that is to worship Allaah (alone), and abandon worship of other than Him.
[Ref 1] Major Shirk and Minor Shirk: The Shaikh, Saaleh Al-Fawzaan [may Allaah preserve him] stated in his book titled ‘Duroos Minal Qur’aan’ that minor shirk does not expel a person from the Milla (i.e. the religion). Minor shirk is related words uttered by a person, such as one who says, ‘‘Had it not been for Allaah and you’’ or ‘’what Allaah and you will’’. This is minor shirk on condition that the person does not hold it as belief in his heart. The Shaikh also spoke of other types of apparent minor Shirk, such as swearing by other than Allaah, and Hidden Minor Shirk such as Riyaa [showing off in worship]. [See Duroos Minal Qur’aan for further details. Page: 172]. The reader must read the article in this link [http://www.abukhadeejah.com/ahmad-an-najmees-kitaab-at-tawheed-chapter-3-fear-of-falling-into-shirk/] because the subject matter is discussed in more detail, and by the permission of Allaah the reader will be facilitated with a precise understanding.
Adhering to Taqwaa
Towards the end of his life, the Prophet [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] admonished the people, as occurs in the hadeeth of Irbaad Ibn Saariyah [radiyallaahu anhu], who said:
The Prophet [sallal-laahu-alayhi-sallam] led us in prayer one day, then turned his face towards us, and delivered a powerful admonition that made our hearts fearful and our eyes tearful. So, a man said: ”O Messenger of Allaah, it is as if it were a farewell admonition, so what do you enjoin upon us”? He said: ”I advise you to fear Allaah and to listen and obey even if a slave is a leader over you. Verily, the one who lives among you after me will see a lot of differences. So, stick to my Sunnah and the Sunnah of the rightly guided khulafaa. Bite onto that with your molar teeth. And avoid the newly invented matters. Verily, every newly invented matter is an innovation and every innovation is misguidance.”
In this command, the Prophet [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] advised us –[by way of command]- to have Taqwah. It [Taqwah] is a comprehensive word that gathers all good qualities [or characteristics] in it. And the meaning of Taqwah is: a shield placed as a means of protection between yourself and what you fear will harm you. It is what shields you from danger, such as a shield placed as a means of protection between your foot and the excessive heat on the ground, or a shield placed as a means of protection between you and an injurious thing, or a shield placed as means of protection between you and a weapon, or a placed as a means of protection between you and the cold or the heat. This is related to physical [or tangible] things.
On the hand, [Taqwah in the Sharee’ah means] to protect yourself from the Anger of Allaah, His punishment and the fire of hell- by carrying out what He has commanded and avoiding what He has forbidden. You cannot be protected from the punishment of Allaah, His Anger, and the Fire of Hell by fortresses, armies and garments; rather you can only be protected through Fear of Allaah [Glorified and Exalted be He] by carrying out what He has commanded and avoiding what He has forbidden.
Obedience to the Rulers
Irbaad Ibn Saariyah [radiyallaahu anhu] said: The Prophet [sallal-laahu-alayhi-sallam] led us in prayer one day, then turned his face towards us, and delivered a powerful admonition that made our hearts fearful and our eyes tearful. So, a man said: ”O Messenger of Allaah, it is as if it were a farewell admonition, so what do you enjoin upon us”? He said: ”I advise you to fear Allaah and to listen and obey even if a slave is a leader over you. Verily, the one who lives among you after me will see a lot of differences. So, stick to my Sunnah and the Sunnah of the rightly guided khulafaa. Bite onto that with your molar teeth. And avoid the newly invented matters. Verily, every newly invented matter is an innovation and every innovation is misguidance.”
This [i.e. obedience to the rulers] is a means to safety. Indeed, the Ummah listens to its leaders and obeys him, so that they can be a united body, a powerful force and a shield of protection against its enemies. Allaah [The Most High] said: [وَٱعۡتَصِمُواْ بِحَبۡلِ ٱللَّهِ جَمِيعً۬ا وَلَا تَفَرَّقُواْۚ – ‘And hold fast, all of you together, to the Rope of Allaah (i.e. the Qur’aan), and be not divided among yourselves]. [3:103]
This united body cannot be accomplished except by way of Leadership and an Imaam [i.e. a Ruler]. Leadership cannot be accomplished except by way of Sam’i Wat Taa’ah [i.e. to listen to the Ruler and being obedient to him] even if he is an Abyssinian slave and if he does not command a person to disobey Allaah. Therefore, the Leader of the Muslims is to be obeyed because there is an overriding benefit for the Muslims in doing so – in order bring about unity. However, the exception in this [affair] is what the Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] stated that ‘There is no obedience to the creation in disobedience to the Creator [Allaah]. Therefore, the is not obeyed in disobedience to Allaah, but he is obeyed in that which is in opposition to sin. However, this does not mean that we come out and rebel if he commands disobedience; rather we do not obey him in sin, but we obey him in those affairs that do not involve sin. [See link: http://www.abukhadeejah.com/the-tyranny-of-the-rulers-a-reason-for-rebellion/].
Holding Onto The Authentic Sunnah of The Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] and the Sunnah of the Khulafaa Ar-Raashideen When Differing Occurs
The Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] said: ‘’Verily, the one who live among you after me will see a lot of differing, so stick to my Sunnah and the Sunnah of the rightly guided khulafaa.’’
This is another means to safety – adherence to the Sunnah of the Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] and the Sunnah of the Rightly Guided Khulafah: Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthmaan and Ali [radiyallaahu anhum]. They are the successors of Allaah’s Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] whose path is to be followed together with the Sunnah of Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam.
And he [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] said: ”Ikhtilaafan Kathiirah” [i.e. a lot of differing will occur] and not ”Ikhtilaafan Yaseerah [little or minor differing]; rather it is a lot. The Ummah cannot find safety from this [blameworthy] differing, except by holding fast to the Sunnah of the Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi- wasallam] and to that which his Rightly Guided Khulafaah, the Muhaajiroon and the Ansaar were upon. Allaah [The Most High] said: [ٱلسَّـٰبِقُونَ ٱلۡأَوَّلُونَ مِنَ ٱلۡمُهَـٰجِرِينَ وَٱلۡأَنصَارِ وَٱلَّذِينَ ٱتَّبَعُوهُم بِـإِحۡسَـٰنٍ۬ رَّضِىَ ٱللَّهُ عَنۡہُمۡ وَرَضُواْ عَنۡهُ وَأَعَدَّ لَهُمۡ جَنَّـٰتٍ۬ تَجۡرِى تَحۡتَهَا ٱلۡأَنۡهَـٰرُ -And the foremost to embrace Islaam of the Muhaajiroon (those who migrated from Makkah to Al Madeena) and the Ansaar (the citizens of Al Madeenah who helped and gave aid to the Muhaajiroon) and also those who followed them exactly (in faith). Allaah is well pleased with them as they are well-pleased with Him. He has prepared for them Gardens under which rivers flow (Paradise) [9:100]
When the Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] informed of us of the differing and splitting that will occur, he said: ”The Jews split into 71 sects, and the Christians split into 72 sects. And my Ummah will split into 73 sects, all of them in the fire except one. We said: ”Which one is it O Messenger of Allaah”? He said: Those who are upon that which I and my companions are upon”
So, there is no safeguard against the Fitnah of [blameworthy] differing in every era, especially during the end of time, except by way of holding fast to the Sunnah of the Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] and path of his companions. This is what will protect us from the fire and this why Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaa’ah are called ‘The Saved Sect”– the sect that is safeguarded against the fire on the Day of Judgment. And those in opposition will not be saved, due their opposition and splitting away from the saved sect, except those who are firm upon [the Sunnah of the Messenger and the path of the Sahaabah]. And firmness upon the truth, the Sunnah of the Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] and the way of the companions cannot be accomplished except by way of beneficial knowledge. How can one be firm upon something, yet he [or she] is ignorant of it? We must learn the Sunnah of the Messenger [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] and path his companions were upon, until we become firm upon it and hold fast to it.
The Severe Consequences of Opposing The Messenger’s Commands
Narrated Abu Musa (radiyallaahu-anhu): The Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) said, ‘’My example, and the example of what I have been sent with is that of a man who came to some people and said, O people! I have seen the enemy’s army with my own eyes and I am a plain warner; so protect yourselves!’ Then a group of his people obeyed him and fled at night proceeding stealthily till they were safe, while another group of them disbelieved him and stayed at their places till morning when the army came upon them and killed and ruined them completely. So this is the example of that person who obeys me and follows that truth which I have brought (the Qur’aan and the Sunnah), and the example of the one who disobeys me and disbelieves the Truth I have brought.
[Saheeh Al-Bukhaari. Vol 9. Number: 7283]
Also, others issues were mentioned such as:
Fulfilling our covenants whilst living in the West see link:
Shaikh Uthaymeen [rahimahullaah] stated during a tele-link, on the 28th July 2000:
Likewise I invite you to have respect for those people who have the right that they should be respected, from those between you and whom there is an agreement (of protection) [i.e. Non-Muslims]. For the land which you are living is such that there is an agreement between you and them. If this were not the case they would have killed you or expelled you. So preserve this agreement, and do not prove treacherous to it, since treachery is a sign of the hypocrites, and it is not from the way of the Believers.
And know that it is authentically reported from the Prophet that he said : “Whoever kills one who is under an agreement of protection will not smell the fragrance of Paradise.”
Do not be fooled by those sayings of the foolish people: those who say: ‘Those people are Non-Muslims, so their wealth is lawful for us [i.e. to misappropriate or take by way of murder and killing].’ For by Allaah – this is a lie. A lie about Allaah’s Religion, and a lie in Islamic societies.
O my brothers. O youth. O Muslims. Be truthful in your buying and selling, and renting, and leasing, and in all mutual transactions. Because truthfulness is from the characteristics of the Believers, and Allaah – the Most High – has commanded truthfulness – in the saying of Allaah – the Most High – “O you who believe – fear and keep you duty to Allaah and be with the truthful.”
And the Prophet encouraged truthfulness and said : “Adhere to truthfulness, because truthfulness leads to goodness, and goodness leads to Paradise; and a person will continue to be truthful, and strive to be truthful until he will be written down with Allaah as a truthful person“.
And he warned against falsehood, and said : “Beware of falsehood, because falsehood leads to wickedness, and wickedness leads to the Fire. And a person will continue lying, and striving to lie until he is written down with Allaah as a great liar.”
O my brother Muslims. O youth. Be true in your sayings with your brothers, and with those Non-Muslims whom you live along with – so that you will be inviters to the Religion of Islaam, by your actions and in reality. So how many people there are who first entered into Islaam because of the behaviour and manners of the Muslims, and their truthfulness, and their being true in their dealings. [end of quote][Telelink 28th July 2000]
 The Perils of Rebellion
This topic was also discussed in brief during the khutbah, listen to Shaikh Fawzaan here:
 Brothers and sisters were reminded about being dutiful to parents; brothers were reminded about kind treatment towards wives and sisters were reminded about obedience to husbands in what is good.
Arabic Booklet here:
The Means to Safety for The Ummah
In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy
Narrated Sa’id bin Al-Musaiyab: ‘Umar came to the mosque while Hassaan was reciting a poem. (‘Umar disapproved of that). On that Hassaan said, “I used to recite poetry in this very mosque in the presence of one (i.e. the Prophet ) who was better than you.” Then he turned towards Abu Hurairah and said (to him), “I ask you by Allah, did you hear Allah’s Messenger saying (to me), ‘Retort on my behalf. O Allah! Support him (i.e., Hassaan) with the Ruh Al-Qudus [i.e. Jibril (Gabrael)]?” Abu Hurairah said, “Yes.” [Bukhaari 4/3212]
Imaam Abu Haatim [rahimahullaah] said: There is evidence in this narration similar to the command to disparage the du’afaa [weak narrators]. That is because the Prophet [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] said to Hassaan [radiyallaahu-anhu], ‘’Retort on my behalf.’’ He [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] commanded [Hassaan (radiyallaahu-anhu)] to defend him against the lies that the idol worshippers uttered about him. And when it is the case that the Messenger of Allaah [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] commanded [Hassaan] to defend him against the lies of the idol worshippers, even though neither did their lies harm the Muslims nor make what is Haraam to be Halaal and vice versa; then it is more appropriate that he [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] is defended against those Muslims who lie about him [sallal-laahu-alahu-wasallam] through their [weak, fabricated] narrations and thus declare Haraam as Halaal and vice versa. 
[Source: Muqaddimah Kitaab Al-Majrooheem Minal Muhadditheen of Imaam Ibn Hibbaan (rahimahullaah). Page: 67-68. Slightly paraphrased]
Ref 1: Notes: Must Read: Regarding the Affair of Declaring Something Halaal that is Haraam and vice versa: http://www.spubs.com/sps/sp.cfm?subsecID=GSC05&articleID=GSC050006&pfriend=
Also see article about Takfeer on these links: