Is the Quran or Bible the Word of God? Christianity or Islam?

Islam Hadiths, Hadith 26, Nawawi

Nawawi’s Forty Hadiths: Hadith 26 taught by Sheikh Gomaa: Righteous Deeds (sadaqah)

Muslim Stereotypes

There are many representations and stereotypes of Islam on the Internet that most Muslims would not agree with:1
  • Allah is the name of a moon god
  • All Muslims are terrorists
  • Muslims that are not violent are bad Muslims
  • Muslim women have no rights
  • All Muslims are Arabs
  • Muslims cannot adapt to western societies
  • Islam and democracy are contradictory

One of the aims of this blog is to dialogue between Christians and Muslims about the Muslim religion and the Christian religion.  Good dialogue involves listening.  God has given us two ears and one mouth – probably to remind us that we should talk have as much as we listen.  Every blogger and apologist should learn Proverbs 10:19.  In order to avoid the contagious disease of logorrhea blogorrhea – incessant blogtalk – I have been listening and learning to Sheikh Ali Gomaa teach about Nawawi and the Forty Hadith.

Nawawi (631 – 676 A.H / 1234 – 1278 A.D.) was a classical Islamic scholar; he lived and died in the 13th century and is remembered for his compiliation of 42 traditions of Muhammad (ahadith).  I have been studying his “40 Hadith” because they are widely regarded as the best introduction to Muhammad’s sayings in the English language.

Here is the twenty-sixth hadith compiled by al-Nawawi, first in Arabic and then the English translation of the Arabic,

عن أبي هريرة رضي الله عنه ، قال : قال رسول الله صلي الله عليه وسلم : ( كل سلامى من الناس عليه صدقة كل يوم تطلع فيه الشمس تعدل بين اثنين صدقة ، وتعين الرجل فى دابته فتحمله عليها أو ترفع له عليها متاعة صدقة ، والكلمة الطيبة صدقة ، وبكل خطوة تمشيها إلي الصلاة صدقة ، وتميط الأذي عن الطريق صدقة ).
رواه البخاري [ رقم : 2989 ] ، ومسلم [ رقم : 1009 ]
Sahih Al-Bukhari

Muslims believe Bukhari is the most authentic book after the Quran. It is a book of revelation for Muslims providing proper guidance and ethics.

On the authority of Abu Hurairah (radi allahu ‘anhu2), who said : The Messenger of Allah3 said:

 

Every joint of a person must perform a charity each day that the sun rises : to judge justly between two people is a charity (sadaqah ). To help a man with his mount, lifting him onto it or hoisting up his belongings onto it, is a charity (sadaqah ). And the good word is a charity (sadaqah ). And every step that you take towards the Prayer is a charity (sadaqah ), and removing a harmful object from the road is a charity (sadaqah).
It was related by Bukhari (صحيح البخاري) and Muslim (صحيح مسلم).

 

Listen to Ali Gomaa, the Grand Mufti of Egypt and hadith scholar, teach about the twenty-sixth hadith.  My notes follow:

YouTube Preview Image

0:28-2:48

Ali Gomaa discusses the phrase “Each person’s every joint…”.  He says, “This means that you will never be able to count the blessings of Allah…You are blessed with many favors,   which you can never thank or praise Allah enough for.  But the Prophet presents to you many ways for benevolence doing good, and giving sadaqah.”

Ali Gomaa discusses a hadith recorded by Bukari about  the best deeds a Muslim can do,

Narrated ‘Abdullah bin ‘Amr: That Allah’s Apostle said. “There are forty virtuous deeds and the best of them is the Maniha of a she-goat and anyone who does one of these virtuous deeds hoping for Allah’s reward with firm confidence that he will get it then Allah will make him enter Paradise because of Hassan (a sub-narrator) said. “We tried to count those good deeds below the Maniha; we mentioned replying to the sneezer removing harmful things from the road etc. but we failed to count even fifteen.” Volume 3. Book 47. Number 800

Ali Gomaa said Abdel-‘Aziz Ibn Siddiq al Ghomari (various English spellings: Shaykh Abu Al-Fadl Abdullah Ibn Al-Siddīq Al-Ghumari) (1910-1993) tried to collect all forty virtuous deeds mentioned in the ahadith.  He wrote a book called, Tamam al-Minnah bi Bayan al-Khisal al-Mujibah lil Jannah.

If anyone can tell me where I can get an English list of the 40 virtuous deeds or translation of Ghumari, I would be most appreciative (see 50 Narrations on Good Deeds).

4:02-4:22

Ali Gomaa comments on a good word being sadaqah (righteous deed).

“Therefore, if some people say they cannot perform a sadaqah because they are sick, a good word is a sadaqah.  “A good word is a sadaqah should be the slogan of the Muslim’s life.”

4:23-4:50

Ali Gomaa comments on each step to prayer being a sadaqah.

“This is why the righteous forefathers used to go to a distant mosque to gain more rewards with every step.  This indicates the importance of going to the mosque; that there is a great reward missed by he who does not pray in the mosque.”

Islam, Christianity, Righteousness, and Good Works

Ali Gomaa repeatedly mentions in this video “sadaqah.”  My guess is that it is related to the Hebrew word for righteousness, tsâdaqah.  Therefore, in order to understand this hadith Christians need to understand that the emphasis is on righteous deeds.

When it comes to sadaqah (righteous deeds) and our relationship to our neighbor there are many similarities between Islam and Christianity.  That is because we are made in the image of God and have the Law of God written on our conscience.

When it comes to sadaqah (righteousness) and our relationship with God, there is an eternal difference between Christianity and Islam.  Our righteous deeds can never measure up to the perfect standard of God’s righteousness.  This is why we need God’s grace; this is why Jesus had to be born of the Virgin Mary, and under the Law (Galatians 4:4).

In Christian and Muslim dialogue, it is important to understand the distinction between righteousness in relationship to our neighbor and righteousness in relationship to God.  When it comes to good deeds in relationship to our neighbor we are grateful for the righteousness of Christians, Muslims and all other people of faith or no faith.  Christians don’t have a monopoly on good deeds in relationship to others!  When it comes to righteousness in relationship to God, Jesus has a monopoly on this kind of righteousness.  This is one of the most important themes of the Bible and why the righteous live by faith (Habakkuk 2:4; Romans 1:16-17).

Is it a good work for Muslims to deny God’s work in Jesus’ death on the cross and resurrection from the dead?

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Footnotes

  1. Muslims can also have their own stereotypes.  See for example Dr. William Granara, “The Portrayal of the American in Arabic Literature”
    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/globalconnections/mideast/video/cmes1.html at PBS Global Connections []
  2. Arabic to English translation, May Allah be pleased with him. []
  3. Arabic to English translation meaning, May Allah bless him and grant him peace.  Often abbreviated SAWS. This Arabic phrase is used after references to Muhammad and his titles. []

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