The Test of Power
Channel: Nouman Ali Khan
File Size: 18.89MB
This khutbah is period appropriate wherein globally the wielding of power is shifting. Malaysia, Pakistan, indonesIn and soon in the US and UK too.
But our beloved Sheikh brings this element of power back to us in this khutbah. The power to move from point A to point B, the power to hold a pen between our fingers and the power to choose the right person to rule a natuon.
Surah Al Imran verse 26 addresses this element and our beloved Sheikh breaks it down for us to understand and comprehend.
It is necessary to know the levels that exist within power – power over a dominion coupled with ‘izza i.e. respect and authority like our beloved prophet s.a.w. and Sulayman a.s., power only without ‘izza like the pharoah and nimrud, respect and authority without power like Yusuf a.s. and Ibrahim a.s.
Therefore it is necessary for us to educate ourselves with the extent of power and its relevance to us and thereafter to bear in mind that all Power, the Giver of power, the Owner of Power is Allah the Creator of Power.
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In the midst of always changing news events around the world,
one of the things that people keep a very close eye on is who came into power and who lost power. You know, the Trump administration, for example is, you know, up for reelection soon. And there's already discussion about what's going to happen there. There are countries like Pakistan or recent more recently than that, even before that Turkey, where there were elections, and people were fired up about that, or, you know, political events that are taking place in Malaysia, or Indonesia, different parts of the Muslim world, and really the world at large. And there's so much of the news filled with discussion about how these transitions of power are going to affect the people how
they're going to affect the country, how they're going to affect foreign foreign policy. And these are the thoughts that are on our minds a lot when these major events happen. And I thought that this is a good opportunity to remind ourselves about something that a lot has to say about power. And what I want to start with is that when we when we think about, you know, something, someone coming into control or something, someone coming into a position of power or authority, that we start thinking of people like in a position of credit presidency, or prime ministership, or, you know, rulership and governance and things like that. But before all of that Allah has given every one of
us a degree of power, he's given us control over our bodies, he's given us control over our limbs, our eyes, our tongues, that's the kind of mold that he gave us over this, this territory, this body is actually not something I own. But it's something Allah gave me authority over, you know, and the fact that I'm able to use my tongue at the moment, or my mind can think something, and communicate that down to the way that my tongue can reach it. And the fact that you can hear these sounds and process them and make sense of them is all something of power that Allah gave us a milk that'll actually gave us. And this is something that we don't actually own. Similarly, a little bit further
beyond our own bodies, Allah has given us some level of authority or influence or control. In our lives, you've got some level of authority over the things that you own. The fact that you turn your steering wheel, right and the car turns, right is a Audrina in a motel Allah gave you over your car, you know, because if Allah wants the steering fluid can go, and the car is going straight, no matter how much you turn, like it used to happen when I lived in New York, and it was snowy days, you could turn all you want, it's still going straight, you know. So that's something that Allah grants, it's not something that we own or possess. And beyond that is, of course, control and authority that we
exert over people. As a parent, I have some degree of control over my children, I like to think I have a lot more control, but I really don't, it's a degree of control that I have exercised over my children, a spouse can exert influence, or control over another spouse, you know, teachers can exert control over or influence over students. So in our personal lives in society, whether it's in our family or at work, maybe you're the manager, you have some control over the the your team, the people that are working under your team, maybe you're the employer, you're the owner of the business, you have control over your employees. So Allah has given us different degrees of milk,
different degrees of control, and authority and power in our life. So when we hear these ions that I'm going to share with you, I don't just want you to think about somebody who became president, and now they have power, and now we're thinking about their power. And this, this, this has to be a hook, but they better hear. But actually, this is something that you and I need to hear, because every one of us, in fact has been endowed with has been given some degree of power and influence, if not, at least the very least on our own cells, but beyond ourselves. Also. Allah azza wa jal told us commanded us to declare this, he said Colin lahoma, Malika Mulkey total Malcolm and Tasha potenzial
Malcolm. Tasha, what resume and Tasha what was illumine Tasha via Deacon hive in Nicola kulesza in Cadiz a very famous if So tell me, Ron, and it begins with a lot commanding us to declare the school Allahumma say, Oh Allah, say this to Allah. In other words, this is something that needs to be rehearsed. It's something that's ended by the way, this is not just a DA No, the others are thought of, there's some kind of a request. Usually when you find that there is no Quran you find robina Robinette enough adonia you know, Robin, Allah kulu Baba and the same surah. But here, we find something else you find you and me telling something to Allah, declaring something to Allah, as if
we are testifying to Allah, that the fact that we believe in Him leads us to this additional testimony. It's actually an extension in the sense of our understanding of the Shahada of La ilaha illAllah. What does that mean for us practically? So we say Oh Allah, Malik Al mulk, the owner of all Kingdom
The owner of all Dominion have sovereignty of power. And hear this phrase even though this entire football can be about that phrase. I want to just make you think about one piece of this remarkable phrase. Malik al mulk Malik is someone who owns something. So I can be Malik of a pen. I can be Malik of this TV over here. Like we Mallika objects, I own things. Back in the day, people used to own a sheep or a cow, they were Moloch of it, you understand? But you're not Malik over and the things that you're mulling over that you own, you have complete right to do whatever you want. If I want to break my pen, it's my right. If I want to throw it in the trash, it's my right if I want to
write with it, it's my right. I have absolute authority to do what I want. And no one can question me why I'm doing what I doing what I'm doing, because it is entirely mine. If you own a car, and you decide that you want to change its tires, or you decide that you want to slash its tires, that's your problem. Nobody can question you. Because it's yours. Back in the day somebody owned a goat, they want to slaughter the goat or milk the goat it's up to them, you understand. So when Allah describes himself as Malik, before he mentioned Malik, Malik al mulk his community, we're communicating something to Allah that we understand about him, he absolutely owns all power. The
power that I possess is his ownership. The power that he gives me or he takes away from me is his ownership. In other words, why did he give this one authority? Why did he take authority from this one away? Is not ever something I can question.
That decision of his is his, that belongs to him. And it's not something I will ever be in a position to question because power itself is something Allah owns, has full rights over to us and distribute as he sees fit along my monocle book. And by extension of that phrase, we then say total Malcolm and Tasha potenzial, Malcolm in menasha. You grant dominion, you grant power, you grant authority, you grant sovereignty to whoever you want, and you pull it away from whoever you want. This is a fact. Allah, we're declaring to allow you do this at your discretion. Whoever you decide gets power, whoever you decide, you start pulling power away from them. The interesting thing about
the Arabic of this part of the ayah is the word milk is used twice to tell Milka man Tasha with 10 zero Milka in mentorship, even though you can use a woman, you could say to Malcolm and Tasha, 10, zero who in mentorship, you can just replace it with a pronoun. In other words, in English, you could say, you give power to whoever you want, and you pull it away from whoever you want, you could say the word it the second time, but he uses the word power or Dominion or Kingdom again the second time. And when you do that, in ancient Arabic, the purpose of that is to maybe not even refer to two different kinds of power, or two different sets of power, but the same power. And what does that
mean in Simple English? It means you know, when you when you first hear you give power to whoever you take it away from whoever you give kingdom to whoever you take it away from whoever you think he gave it to one person and you took you took it away from another person, right? That's what comes in our mind. But the use of milk twice like that teaches us something more. It teaches us that he can give it to someone and then take it away from the same one. The one he gave it to is the one he can take it away from. That's up to him he decides it's not even he gave to one and took something else from another supanova that Allah did not ever hand someone a blanket endorsement here you have
power, you get to keep it forever. Nope. I will decide a level decide rather, when you get it when you have it and he will decide when it's taken away from you. He'll decide that to the terms of that power don't come from an election term. They don't come from a duration of a presidency. They don't come from the health of a ruler that comes from Allah. When will they have it? When will it be taken away? That's the first lesson here. The second lesson is Allah separated this from Elisa, total Malcolm and Tasha, what turns you on will come in man, Tasha, what's your Izu min Tasha was illumine Tasha. He says he gives power he gives Dominion to whoever he wants, or you whoever you want you you
give power. You pull it away, and I'll talk about pulling away later on in Africa, from whoever you want. Then he says you give Riza what resume mentorship mentorship, what in the world is reserved, reserved basically is two things is that is authority. One meaning of is is authority. So anybody who has authority over us has a kind of reserved but it's not only authority. This also means respect, dignity, Khurram.
So you know, there are people sometimes they have authority, but they don't have respect. That happens. Maybe they're police officers that have authority, but because they've been abusive in their neighborhood, the community doesn't respect them. That happens. It could be some government has authority, but they're not respected. That's possible. It's also the opposite also possible. Sometimes people are respected, but they have no authority. It could be a teacher or an intellectual or a writer that is respected for their ideas, but they have no other
authority to implement their ideas. Nobody actually takes their ideas and does something with them. So they have respect, but they don't have authority that can happen. But when someone has Iza, they actually have both they command respect and they command authority. Now, unless taking it a step further, he's separating mulk. From ERISA, those are two separate things. Just because you have power, doesn't mean you have respect
doesn't actually mean you have authority in the hearts of people, you may have authority on paper, you're the king, you're the ruler. But that doesn't mean people have accepted your authority, or they respect your authority that can happen. So Allah says he can give kingdom, he can give dominion and take Dominion away. But that kingdom and that Dominion does not necessarily mean that someone else has someone has to be separated those two concepts from each other. It's a remarkable thing that Allah did, because in the world's eyes, sometimes whoever has power must also have respect. And you know, they come up with fake forms of respect, because they won a certain position, then they
have to have an inauguration to honor them, they have to have ceremonies to celebrate and respect them, or when you go meet them, you have to have a certain kind of decorum, all of these formalities to show that this person has respect. But ally is teaching us that actually true respect and true authority. And true honor is not something you can get from the ceremony. You can't get it on a piece of paper. You can't get it because you're sitting at a certain podium or living in a certain palace. It doesn't come from that. It's a law gives that in the hearts of people. A lot puts that in the hearts of people. So somebody could be living in the highest palaces, but not command any
respect. not have any reason whatsoever, even though they think they have milk. So he says to Malcolm and Sasha buttons, urine will come in menasha what resume and Tasha, what to the lumen Tasha, by the way, this also means strength. Really interesting contrast, not just respect, but also mean strength. Like unless as far as does not beat Allison. Allison, so to see, we reinforce to profits with a third one, we strengthen them, the word is I was used for that too. In other words, just because you have Kingdom doesn't mean you have strength. Sometimes there are people who have the label, but they have no actual power. They don't have the power to do something. They just have
that authority. How many times this has happened in our personal lives, I don't just want you to think about politics. I want you to think about our personal lives. Also, how many times can it be that a father has authority on paper, officially is the provider for the family. He's supposed to have that some level of milk, but is he has no power to make his son or daughter do something or say something or change their behavior at all powerless. Also, sometimes he's got that authority, but he's not respected at all, has no agenda. So he says to Tim, welcome and Tasha.
Tasha, Tasha to the lumen Tasha to the loo also means to humiliate you humiliate whoever you want. But it also means you make powerless whoever you want. separating those two notions in our minds. That gives us four possibilities. And I want you to think about these four possibilities. One possibility and in our life, in any situation, we're going to have one of these four possibilities. One possibility is Allah has given you milk. And he has given you as well That's one possibility. He gave you authority, he gave you kingdom, he gave you control. And at the same time, you command the strength to exercise that control properly, and you're respected. That's the best of both worlds. It
does happen. This this is something Sulaiman la Salaam, enjoyed. This is something Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam enjoyed, you know, because one is to have physical power on the outside. And the other is to have the respect and love and adoration of your followers on the inside. To have that you really have to have true leadership. You can't just get that. That has to be earned. But that's the best of both worlds. Now, the second scenario is you could have as I've been saying, you could have milk but no,
it's possible. Pharaoh had a lot of milk,
fat and had a lot of power, a lot of control and in some sense, he had strength too. But over time is that started deteriorating. People didn't respect him. They were laughing at him. He couldn't even control masala Islamorada believers. He couldn't even control his own cabinet. Over time, he started losing more and more and more. So milk is there, but it isn't going away. So you could proudly say and they say Lee muku Misra, right. He says, I own the kingdom of Egypt alone. I'm the king, the only king but you know, he saw that his eyes going away. So when he chopped when he told the magician's to make him look good when they challenged Noosa you know what they said? They didn't
say be monkey around they said that if Iran inland and a boon we declared that is that the glory the respect the honor of the pharaoh because he knew that's where he's taking a hit. The army is still there. Luke is still there. The dignity
He's gone. And he needs that to hold on to his power. So you could have that second scenario where you have some controls some authority, some label, but you have no respect left, no real authority in the hearts of those that follow you left. A third scenario is you have no power, law milk, you have, you have no more you have no control, no power, no authority, but you still have respect.
You still have respect. I mean, I'm reminded of the story of Yusuf Ali sub, this boy has no power. He's a servant.
But he's respected by his owner.
To the point where when he's being put in a in a hospital, and in the servants quarters, the owner says, a creamy Messiah who honor his residents, respect his residents. So it's possible. Don't think just because you don't have power, you can have respect. That's what I'm trying to get across. You can actually have dignity and respect and honor. Even though you have no material power, no money, no control, no social status, those things are mutually exclusive. We think of millions of people around the world that don't have what common luxuries that you and I take for granted. There are so many millions of people in the world that don't have any transportation, they don't even have a
bicycle. They don't have does that mean they have no respect. The people that live in villages, the people that live you know, and don't receive a modern education. These are noble people. These are respectable people. But you know what we've done somewhere in the back of our minds, when you get a certain level of education, when you get a certain level of authority, then you're respectable. But if you don't have those things, you're less respectable. So a taxi driver is less respectable. The waiter at the restaurant is less respectable. The farmer is less respectable. The guy hanging off the back of the garbage truck is less respectable, but the PhD at the University is more
respectable. He has some level of authority to put the one in political office is more respectable. These are artificial definitions in our mind.
Allah has created a world in which there are sometimes people that have no power, no respect, no authority, look at how honored the people of the cave are. We honor them to this day, they had no power. Look at the position Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam being expelled from his home having to live in a cave, having to live in in exile, eating off of dried up twigs to survive. And that is still the most noble man that ever lived. So a lot more news on him. You don't think of someone who's become homeless as someone who has honored and Ibrahim Ali Salaam was made homeless, and he's honored now. mulk but there is a Bonilla Hellraiser.
mininova says he belongs to Allah alone, and to his messenger and to all those who believe if so long as you have human and Allah is that will never go away, is that is directly connected to your email. And the last one powerful thing. And then of course, there's the worst case scenario, you have no power, no Dominion law. mulk weather is
no respect either. No authority, either. There are people unfortunately that, you know, just because they don't have in the material sense, you don't have money or you don't have social influence, you don't have control.
That's enough for you to act in a way that you don't even respect your own self.
in want of getting those things we sometimes degrade ourselves, humiliate ourselves. And so that's the worst of the worst at the very bottom, you know, to not have milk and to also not have eggs at the same time. And as you learn this, you're learning something even more powerful. Milk is less important, as as more important. That's actually what you're learning. And so as we move forward, Allah azza wa jal tells us via decal, hi.
We tell a lie as we make the statement to him. We say you're in your hands alone, or at your disposal alone, all good belongs. All good is only under your control. This is an incredible thing we say because now we're saying to Allah, whether I have milk, and
that'll be good. If I have milk, and notice that you'll find a way to make that good too. If I have no milk and just a desire, there'll be a good that'll come out of that too. If I have neither of those things, there'll be some good that will come from some somewhere out of that too. You can create good out of anything. We see good when we visibly see good luck and create good out of things that we can't even imagine a life Allah is the one who gave power to fit on.
Allah is the one who gave power to the Maroons. You know, the one who argued with Ibrahim alayhis salam, and said I'm the one who gives life and death what the must say about him. lm de la la de hajra Haemophilia B and aata Hola Hola. mulk
didn't you look at the one arguing with a Rahim Allah gave him power. Allah was the one who gave him with a luggages to whoever he wants and he can bring hate out of it in ways we can understand.
Be ethical. Hi, we have full confidence in New York law you distributed this power to good and bad people. You distributed design this way. By
Your decree and we know one thing you only do good. There's only good in it. Leah decahydrate Nicola coalition Cody, you are in complete control over all things, your apps, you have command absolute authority over all things. When Allah decides that home will have power, like I said, When Allah decides Solomon will have power, or they set up a prophet who will do justice, local men who go and do justice, or some tyrant king who do injustice. Either way, all in the same story too. And so to recap, you've got young people whose boats being damaged by a tyrant King. And the same story, you've got a king going and doing justice, and both of them got their power from where Allah said,
this is an like, we talk to a lion, we tell him that in my personal life, and in the world affairs and what's happening around the world, you're the one who distributes this power as a test as a trial.
And you know, the Israelites who were made weak,
they, you know, musasa to them when things got really bad for them. He said, maybe, maybe you're stuck. leafa can fill out, maybe Allah will leave you in power in the land. For America, let's see how you behave.
In other words, it's a bigger trial, according to the Quran, it's a bigger trial and in the Quran to have power than to not have power.
It's a bigger trial. Because when someone has power, when someone has influence, when you're in control in the family, when you decide what to do with with your kids, when you decide where to spend the money, when you have that control, then the choice to the opportunity to make the wrong choice is so much more tempting. Who's gonna question me?
Who's gonna, I don't have to answer to anybody. I could spend my money wherever I want.
I could buy whatever I want. I could go wherever I want. I could do whatever I want. Who are you to ask me.
And so when you have vanilla gives you a little bit of power, that's when it's tested. That's when you and I have to turn to a lie and say my liquid milk till we'll go into Sha 110 zero ml commandment, a Sha. One of the last things I'll tell you is necessary now and he says 10 zero Milka in menasha. There's two things left actually I'll wrap them within two minutes. Now that means to pull in Arabic It means to pull. He said he gives power. But he didn't say he takes away power. He gives more he gives dominion. He didn't say that couldn't work
out does he just remove power? No. Oh to the bookmark? No, no, no 10 01 mantha he pulls power away.
In other words, it may not be that one night one day you woke up and all your power is gone.
You'll see it getting pulled away from you little by little by little by little by little like physical strength a lot did not make us all overnight. The control we had over our body didn't disappear overnight. Little by little you start noticing that you know you used to somebody called you you were sitting and you just get up and then all of a sudden you woke up 10 years later and somebody calls you and it's like the truck backing up like
like it takes a while to sustain what what just happened? Why is my mind getting up and my body's not listening? It's the power is being pulled away slowly. And human beings don't like to let go of their power so they want to hold on why whatever means possible they just want to hold on unless as you can you can pull on this robot you want allies pulling it on the other side you ain't winning this tug of war. It's going and it's going it's going it's going penzion Welcome Amanda so you're gonna watch it leave. But even as you watch it leave just don't lose your
buttons You're welcome Amanda shots Pamela. The radical Hi. In your hand even as power goes away from us authority goes away from us control goes away from us, all good belongs to him. The final thing the final statement we make to Allah is in the gala condition. You are in complete control and complete measure over all things called Ryanair because two things is to be in control. So let's controlling all of this, which is an extension of the idea of Moloch but also Hydra and Kadena in Arabic is to calculate
what is the calculadora humanizing ha tada can
be calculated at stages. Now the the idea of taqdeer what is written for you what is decreed for you what is calculated for you. In other words, Allah decides in precise calculation, when is it that what power will I have? How much of it will I have? Who will I have power over? How long will that power last? When will that go away? How will that go? We all have that when calculated by Allah and mikaila.
I can make whatever calculations I want for my business. I'm gonna grow this much this year, this much next year, this much next year, I can make whatever calculations I want for my career, for my personal goals, my family goals, then I'm going to have this much authority then it's going to be this much then we're going to expand to that much. You're gonna have those. Allah has his own code. He's got his own calculations. And we we declared to allow openly in nacala coalition in Korea, you are in complete control and you have the complete test.
articulation of all things, of all things including ourselves. This is a humility before Allah that we testify with to him in this way. And what I what I want to end with is the following. The next is just a glimpse of that Next I read it on your on your own, I'll give you the number I'm analog, not digital assign number 25, or 26, that I read to you today. And I number 27. What did he say?
to literally laugh in the heart? What Religion The Hierophant
you make the night go into the day, and you make the day go into the night? What made me know how you bring the dead. You know, you bring the living out of the dead, like the dead, Earth is dead, and the life plants come out of it, and you bring the dead out of the living.
Why did he say that? Think about it. Every day we're reminded the sun is so powerful. And all it takes is power away little by little by little and it becomes night. And the night is so dark, like it's endless. And then little by little by little a lot takes it away and brings out day again, the fact that everything we have is temporary, that a lot controls it. And he has a complete calculation of it every single day we're reminded of that just by the night and day, just by night and day. And that that cycle of night and day will eventually lead to two things. it'll eventually lead for us to experience in our family's new life. We'll also experience our own death eventually.
Life and death itself is the ultimate reminder that power isn't something you can keep.
So he says, you know, to me it was a terminal high, but also comenta shall be really sad. But at the end of the day, you provide whoever you want, without any limits. Without any restrictions we allow that which will provide all of us without restriction. May Allah azza wa jal make us humble before his power. And before we think about criticizing the power that Allah has given to others, we really reflect on ourselves about the power and the Dominion Allah has given us and whether we've done justice with that, that that Amana that he's entrusted us with barakallahu li walakum him when he finally when he accompany it with the critiquing