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By Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan
The first, main, and primary foundation of the Call to Allaah, and why this is the case.
The ’aqeedah must come first because the only real cause for the differing and destruction that has come upon our Islaamic world is the loss of purified ’aqeedah.
WHY MUST ’AQEEDAH COME FIRST?
The ’aqeedah (creed) must come first because it is the foundation of the da’wah (call) of the Prophets as Allaah the Exalted said upon the tongue of every Prophet He sent to his people: “O people! Worship Allaah, you do not have a deity other than Him.” [Soorah Hood 11:84]
The ’aqeedah (creed) must come first because it is the decisive partition between abiding in the Fire (forever) and being saved from it. Have you not heard the statement of Allaah – Sublime is His Affair – :
“Verily Allaah does not forgive that shirk (association) be made with Him, and He forgives whatever is less than that for whomever He wishes. And whoever commits shirk with Allaah, then he has indeed perpetrated a great sin.” [Sooratun-Nisaa‘ 4:48]
Shirk is the greatest of those things which negate Tawheed, whish is the basis for the correctness of the correct ’aqeedah.
The ’aqeedah must come first because shirk with Allaah is the greatest form of oppression as Allaah the Exalted says: “Verily Shirk is indeed a great transgression.” [Soorah Luqmaan 31:13]
The ’aqeedah must come first because the only real cause for the differing and destruction that has come upon our Islaamic world is the loss of purified ’aqeedah. So indeed the creed of many of the Muslims today has become corrupted by matters of greater shirk from making tawaaf (encircling) the graves, and seeking help from the dead people inside of them, and trying to fulfill ones needs and affairs from them. So they return to the first jaahiliyyah (pre-Islaamic times of ignorance), and it is as if they have not heard the statement of Allaah the Exalted: ‘‘Verily those whom you call upon besides Allaah do not hear your calls. And if they were able to hear you, then they would not be able to answer you. And upon the Day of Judgement, they will disown your worship of them, and there is none like He who is the All-Knower.” [Sooratul-Faatir 14]
And we prohibit you from the innovations of the Soofiyyah which many of the common folk of the Muslims have erected to (such) an educational level that whole countries have institutionalized these innovations, such as the celebration of the Birthday of the Prophet. And (innovations such as) accompanying the Christians in their festivals, not to mention the deviations in dealings and manners and other than that from that which separates their countries from the Book and the authenticated Sunnah, with the permission of Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic.
And after this beloved brother of mine we have shown the truth of our statement that the ’aqeedah must come first.
Translated by Maaz Qureshi