His Explanation of “Thalaathat-ul-Usool”
In his explanation (sharh) of Imaam Muhammad bin ‘Abdil-Wahhaab’s treatise Thalaathat-ul-Usool, Shaikh ‘Abdur-Rahmaan bin Qaasim [Died 1392H], may Allaah have mercy on him, said:
The author states: “Hijrah means: Moving from a Land of Shirk to a Land of Islaam.” This is in order to preserve one’s religion. The Muhaajireen (migrants) were called by this name because they left behind their lands and homes where they had grown up, for the sake of Allaah, and instead joined a land in which they had no family or wealth. This was the case when they migrated to Madeenah. Therefore, everyone that separates himself from his homeland is a Muhaajir (migrant). The root of the word “Muhaajarah” comes from breaking away, separating oneself and remaining far away from somebody.
The author says: “It is obligatory upon this ummah to migrate from a Land of Shirk to a Land of Islaam.” This is affirmed by the Book, the Sunnah and the unanimous consensus of the scholars. The one who abandons Hijrah is threatened with punishment. Several scholars have relayed that there is consensus on the obligation of Hijrah from the Land of Shirk to the Land of Islaam. In fact, Allaah obligated the Hijrah upon His Messenger (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) and his Companions before He obligated fasting and Hajj, as is agreed upon in the books of principles and subsidiary issues, and well known from the Religion by necessity.
His statement: “And this is everlasting until the (Final) Hour is established” is based on the unanimous agreement of the trustworthy scholars. Shaikh-ul-Islaam (Ibn Taimiyyah) said: “One cannot be safe from Shirk unless he remains far away from its adherents.”
The author continues: “The proof for this is Allaah’s saying: “Verily, as for those whom the angels take (in death) while they are wronging themselves…” i.e. by residing amidst the disbelievers. This ayah was revealed concerning a group of people from the inhabitants of Makkah who professed Islaam but yet did not migrate. So Allaah says: “Verily, as for those whom the angels take (in death).” He is either referring to the Angel of Death and his supporters or just the Angel of Death alone, since the Arabs would speak to one person using the plural form. “…while they are wronging themselves…” by abandoning Hijrah. “They (angels) will say (to them): ‘In what (condition) were you?’” Meaning: Why did you keep living here and not make Hijrah? This is a rebuking, reprimanding, and scolding type of question. Its meaning is: Why did you continue to live here and not make Hijrah? Which side were you on? This is even though the angels know well what side those who didn’t make Hijrah, after it was obligated on them, were on.
Allaah’s saying: “We were weak and oppressed in the earth” means: “We were not able to make Hijrah. We did not have the ability to leave our land nor to travel through the earth.”
“They (angels) will say: ‘Was not the earth of Allaah spacious enough for you to migrate therein?’” This refers to Madeenah – such that they migrate to it and abandon the people of Shirk. The angels did not accept their excuse. And in a hadeeth, it states: “Whoever commingles with a polytheist and resides with him, then he is indeed like him.” [Reported by Abu Dawood and others in various ahaadeeth]
Concerning Allaah’s statement: “…Such men will find their abode in Hell – what an evil destination”, this means: What an evil path to Hell. This shows that the one who abandons Hijrah after it has been made obligatory on him is committing one of the major sins.
Allaah’s saying: “…Except the weak ones among men, and women and children…” refers to those who are unable to perform the Hijrah. The word “children” here refers to both male and female children before the age of puberty.
“Who cannot devise a plan” means: To separate themselves from the polytheists. So these types of people cannot devise a plan or do not have monetary means or power to leave. “Nor are they able to direct their way” means: They do not know of any way to leave from Makkah to Madeenah, since it had become a land of Islaam.
“These are the ones whom Allaah is (most) likely to forgive” meaning: He will pardon those who failed to make Hijrah due to weakness and valid excuses. When Allaah uses “likely” for Himself, it is binding since it is something He desires.
“And Allaah is Ever Oft-Pardoning, Most Forgiving.” This means that He is Oft-Pardoning, overlooking their trespasses, and Most Forgiving to those who turn to Him in repentance. He does not burden a soul with a responsibility except that He gave it the ability to handle it.
Ibn ‘Abbaas said: “My mother and I used to be from among the weak ones, and the Prophet (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) would supplicate for the weak ones while in prayer.”
Allaah says: “O My servants who believe (in Me)! Verily, My earth is spacious.” Allaah orders His believing servants to migrate from the land in which they are not able to establish the Religion to His vast earth. So He informs us that the earth is not constricted, but rather vast, encompassing all of the creatures. If a person is in a land in which he cannot openly practice his Religion, then indeed Allaah has made the earth vast for him so that he could worship him in it as He has commanded him.
Hijrah is likewise obligatory upon everyone that resides in a land in which sins are openly committed and he is not able to change that. Allaah then says: “So to Me alone, perform your worship.” This means: “Single Me out in worship in My vast earth, which I created as well as everything upon it for you. And I created you upon it to worship Me.”
In a qudsee hadeeth, Allaah says: “Son of Aadam, I created you for My sake (i.e. to worship Me.), and I created all things for your sake.”
The author states: “Al-Baghawee, may Allaah have mercy on him, said…” His nickname was Muhyee-us-Sunnah, Abu Muhammad Al-Husayn bin Mas’ood Al-Faraa’. He was the author of the Tafseer, Sharh-us-Sunnah and other books. He passed away in 516H.
He (i.e. Al-Baghawee) said: ‘The reason for the revelation of this ayah was due to some Muslims who had resided in Makkah and did not migrate (to Madeenah). Allaah called out to them using the title of Eemaan (for them).” He reported this on a group amongst the Taabi’een. So he is implying that the one who abandons Hijrah after it has been made obligatory on him is not a disbeliever. Rather, he is sinful and disobedient by having abandoned it. So he is still a believer, but yet has deficient Eemaan. Therefore, he is one of the sinful believers.
The author (i.e. Muhammad bin ‘Abdil-Wahhaab) continues: “The proof for Hijrah from the Sunnah is…”, i.e. proof for the obligation of performing Hijrah from the Land of Shirk to the Land of Islaam from the Sunnah of Muhammad (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam), which we were ordered to follow.
The Prophet (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “Hijrah will not cease until repentance ceases…” This means: Migrating from the Land of Shirk to the Land of Islaam will not come to an end until the repentance comes to an end, i.e. until repentance ceases to be accepted from those who repent. This hadeeth shows that so long as repentance is accepted, Hijrah is obligatory due to its presence.
As for the hadeeth of Ibn ‘Abbaas: “There is no (more) Hijrah after the Conquest (of Makkah), but instead Jihaadand (good) intention” then what this means is: “There is no (more) Hijrah after the Conquest of Makkah from Makkah to Madeenah since Makkah had become a Land of Islaam after it was conquered. This was since a group of people wanted to migrate from Makkah to Madeenah thinking that this was something encouraged. So the Prophet (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) explained to them that he only encouraged this when Makkah was a Land of Disbelief. But as for when it became a Land of Islaam, then it did not apply anymore. So this means: “There is no (more) Hijrah from Makkah to Madeenah.” But as for the establishment and continuity of Hijrah from the Lands of Shirk to the Lands of Islaam, then this is well-known by way of the texts and unanimous agreement.