In this life, the fact that the law is served doesn’t necessarily mean that justice is served. But the situation is completely different on Judgment Day, as Allah describes it using beautifully nuanced language in the first part of Surah Al-A’raf. On that day when we stand humbly before our maker, the scales reveal the absolute truth about our deeds. It is an accurate, precise and justified reckoning. The scales do not measure the quantity of our deeds, but their quality, as each one of us has a unique set of standards that assess the meaning and impact of our actions. This is why we must not compare ourselves to others and why we must always have absolute faith that Allah will never burden us with difficulties that we cannot handle.
Imam Zaid Shakir delivers a Khutbah about the importance of following the Sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his rightly guided successors. This sermon was delivered at the Muslim Community Center – East Bay in Pleasanton, California on May 24, 2019.
One of the most profound and powerful statements in the Quran occurs in Surah An-Najm. Here Allah says that no one will carry anyone else’s burden (wizr) and that each of us will be held accountable for the choices we make. In this passage, Allah is addressing those who find it difficult to follow the “uncomfortable” parts of the faith. He compares them to people who appease themselves with inner monologues about how good they are because they give a little charity. They minimize their mistakes and maximize their good deeds, thinking they are enough to compensate for bad deeds. But only Allah can judge as He will ultimately measure our effort. It is the quality of the effort we make relative to our potential, that we will be held accountable for, not how we performed in comparison with other people. This khutbah was recorded on October 20, 2017 at the Bayyinah Foundation Musalla.
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