The Greatest Matter Commanded by Allaah is Tawheed – Shaykh Fawzan | Dawud Burbank [Audio|En]

Bismillaah

Sharh-ul-Usool-ith-Thalaathah : Lesson 13 Part B
Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzan | Dawud Burbank [Audio|English]

[Souncloud Audio Link

The Greatest Matter Commanded by Allaah is Tawheed.

Imaam Muhammad ibn ‘Abdil-Wahhaab (rahimahullaah) said:

وأعظمُ ما أَمرَ اللهُ به التوحيدَ وهو إفرادُ اللهِ بالعبادة

And the greatest of all that Allaah has commanded is Tawheed, and it is to single out Allaah with all worship17


[17]: Shaykh Fawzan’s Explanation

His saying rahimahullaah, “The greatest of all that Allaah has commanded is Tawheed”: this is very important, that tawheed is the greatest thing that Allaah has commanded. All the commands that Allaah has commanded, all of them, come after tawheed.

And the proof that the greatest thing that Allaah has commanded is tawheed is His saying, He the Most High:

وَاعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ وَلَا تُشْرِكُوا بِهِ شَيْئًا

And worship Allaah alone, and do not associate anything with Him [4:36]

To the end of the aayah.

This aayah contains ten rights, and therefore it is called the aayah of the ten rights. The first of these rights is the right of Allaah the Perfect:

وَاعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ وَلَا تُشْرِكُوا بِهِ شَيْئًا

And worship Allaah alone, and do not associate anything with Him [4:36]

وَبِالْوَالِدَيْنِ إِحْسَانًا

And treat the parents well [4:36]

This is the second right.  

وَبِذِي الْقُرْبَىٰ

And the close relatives [4:36]

This is the third right, and the close relatives, they are those people to whom you are closely related through your father or mother, such as fathers and grandfathers, and paternal uncles and paternal aunts, maternal uncles and maternal aunts, and brothers and sisters, and children of brothers and sisters, and children of paternal uncles and paternal aunts, those people are the close relatives, they have the right of al-Qaraabah (of being your close relative).

Wal-yataamaa” (and the orphans), – the orphans from the Muslims, and they are everyone whose father has died whilst he was young and he had not attained the age of puberty, and therefore he needs someone to take the place of his father in taking care of this child, bringing him up, spending upon him and seeing to his welfare, and removing whatever will harm him, because he has no father to protect him and spend upon him and defend him, so he has a need of someone to help him because he has lost his father and his family, and he has a right in Islaam.

What is important is that Allaah began it with His right, He the Perfect and Most High.

His saying:

وَلَا تُشْرِكُوا بِهِ شَيْئًا

And do not associate anything along with Him [4:36]

He did not restrict Himself to saying:

وَاعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ

And worship Allaah [4:36]

Because worship will not be correct along with shirk and it will not benefit, and it will not be called worship unless it is made purely and sincerely for Allaah the Mighty and Majestic. If it has shirk along with it, then it will not be worship, no matter how much the person exerts himself in its performance. So He joined the matter of worship with the prohibition of shirk, since worship will not be correct with the presence of shirk at all.

This is a proof for the saying of the Shaikh, “The greatest thing that Allaah commanded is tawheed”, since Allaah began many aayahs with it, from them is this aayah, and from them is His saying He the Most High:

وَقَضَىٰ رَبُّكَ أَلَّا تَعْبُدُوا إِلَّا إِيَّاهُ

And your Lord has commanded that you should not worship except Him [17:23]

So He the Perfect and Most High began with tawheed, and this proves that it is the greatest thing that Allaah has commanded.

قُلْ تَعَالَوْا أَتْلُ مَا حَرَّمَ رَبُّكُمْ عَلَيْكُمْ ۖ أَلَّا تُشْرِكُوا بِهِ شَيْئًا ۖ وَبِالْوَالِدَيْنِ إِحْسَانًا ۖ وَلَا تَقْتُلُوا أَوْلَادَكُم مِّنْ إِمْلَاقٍ

Say: Come I will recite to you that which your Lord has truly forbidden for you: do not associate anything in worship with Him, and treat the parents well, and do not kill your children on account of poverty [6:151]

This is a proof for what will follow, that the greatest thing that Allaah has forbidden is shirk. So since the greatest thing that Allaah has commanded is tawheed, then it is obligatory that the person begins by learning ‘aqeedah (correct belief) before everything. Correct creed and belief is the foundation, so it is obligatory that the person begins with it in learning and teaching and that he is constant upon teaching it and explaining it to the people, because it is the greatest thing that Allaah has commanded, so it is not befitting that you make it the last of all things or give no great attention to it, because now there are actually callers who renounce the teaching of tawheed and ‘aqeedah, there are people who are afflicted with this. And because any deficiencies with regard to it will be a deficiency in the whole of the religion so it is obligatory to give careful attention to it.

And what is tawheed ? Is it that you affirm that Allaah is the Creator, the Provider, the Giver of life, the Giver of death? No. Tawheed is: to single out Allaah with worship, because Allaah said:

وَمَا خَلَقْتُ الْجِنَّ وَالْإِنسَ إِلَّا لِيَعْبُدُونِ

And I did not create the jinn and mankind except to worship Me. [51:56]

And the people of tafseer said: Worship Me – meaning single Me out (with all worship). So they explained tawheed as ‘ibaadah (worship).

Therefore, tawheed is to single out Allaah with worship and it is not to affirm that Allaah is the Creator, the Provider, the Giver of life, the Giver of death, the One in control of affairs because this is present in people’s fitrah (inborn nature). It is present in the intellects of those who possess intellect. There is not a person of intellect in the world who truly believes that anyone created the Heavens and the Earth besides Allaah, the Perfect and Most High. There is not in the whole world anyone – and that includes the unbelievers and the atheists – who truly believes that there is anyone from mankind who created mankind.

وَلَئِن سَأَلْتَهُم مَّنْ خَلَقَهُمْ لَيَقُولُنَّ اللَّهُ

And if you were to ask them (the people of shirk) who created them, they would certainly say, “Allaah!” [43:87]

There is not a person with intellect in the whole world who believes truly that a human can create a human being who walks upon the Earth and speaks and eats and drinks. Is there a person with intellect who believes this?

أَمْ خُلِقُوا مِنْ غَيْرِ شَيْءٍ أَمْ هُمُ الْخَالِقُونَ

أَمْ خَلَقُوا السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ ۚ بَل لَّا يُوقِنُونَ

Were they created without any Creator having brought them into existence? Or are they the creators? Or did they create the Heavens and the Earth? Rather they do not have certainty. [52:35-36]

Tawheed-ur-ruboobiyyah (tawheed of Allaah’s Lordship) is something found in the inborn natures and in their intellects; however it will not suffice without tawheed-ul-‘ibaadah (tawheed of worship) – and it is to single out Allaah with all worship.

And therefore the Shaykh said: Tawheed is to single out Allaah with worship and it is not to single out Allaah with respect to creating and providing and giving life and giving death because this is something which is known and tawheed-ur-ruboobiyyah (tawheed of Allaah’s Lordship) will not suffice with regard to the definition of tawheed.

Sharh-ul-Usool-ith-Thalaathah. Explanation of the Three Fundamental Principles of Imaam Muhammad ibn ‘Abdil-Wahhaab by Shaykh Saalih ibn Fowzaan al-Fowzaan hafizahullaah. Translated by  Daawood  Burbank, rahimahullaah

Posted with kind permission from Dawud Burbank rahimahullaah

Listen to the Full Audio Series:
Sharh Usool-ith-Thalaathah – Shaykh Fawzan | Dawud Burbank

Book Study Resources – Three Fundamental Principles

Related Links: