The last sermon of Umar ibn Abd Al-Aziz
By Ustath Zuheir Salim*
Umar ibn Abd Al-Aziz, may Allah be pleased with him, ruled for two years, and he was considered through them to be a reformer of the second hijri century. He was considered so because of all the changes he brought about, not only in the actual status quo, but also by exemplifying the ideal model for the lives of Muslims. In his example, the short period of time shines due to the greatness of his achievements.
In the last sermon he gave, may Allah have mercy on him, he said:
“O people, you were not created in vain, nor will you be left to yourselves. Rather, you will return to a place in which Allah Most High will descend in order to judge among you and distinguish between you. Destitute and lost are those who forsake the all-encompassing Mercy of Allah Most High, and they will be excluded from Jannah, the borders of which are as wide as the heavens and the earth.
Don’t you know that protection tomorrow will be limited to those who feared Allah [today], and to those who sold something short-lived for something permanent, something small for something great, and fear for protection? Don’t you realise that you are the descendants of those who have perished, that those who remain will take their place after you, and that this will continue until you are all returned to Allah Most High?
Every day you follow the coffin of so and so who died after the end of his lifetime, then you place him in the ground and leave him without a pillow or a bed. He has parted from his loved ones, severed his connections with the living, and taken up residence in the earth, whereupon he comes face-to-face with his reckoning, carrying only his good deeds. Indeed, he needs his accomplishments, but not the material things he left on earth.
Therefore, fear Allah before death descends and its appointed times expire. I swear by Allah that I say those words to you knowing that I myself have committed more sins than any of you. I therefore ask Allah Most High for forgiveness and I repent.”
He then lifted up the edge of his robe to his face and began to cry and sob; then he stepped down. That was the last sermon he gave before he died, may Allah have mercy on him.
*Born in Aleppo in 1947, Ustath Zuheir Salim obtained a degree in Arabic language. His is a keen follower of Fiqh and Tafseer, and has a passion for international and Arabic poetry and literature. Ustath Zuheir has been working in Da’wah since 1975 and has managed the London-based Al-Sharq Al-Arabi Centre since the early 2000s. He has a large following on Facebook and is known for his encyclopaedic knowledge.
Muslim Association of Britain
29rd May 2018 / 13th Ramadan 1439