Belief Alone Is Not Enough… Why Worship Matters

Fruits of Iman in Real Life

These benefits are manifest in practical life and bear out his faith. It helps the believer to attain exaltation and elevation, as is declared by Allah: {To Him mount up goodly words and the righteous work exalts them} (Fatir 35:10).

We learn from this verse that goodly words ascend—it is their nature—but they need support, which is provided by good deeds. Taken in this sense, faith may be compared to a vine that blooms as it gains some support—without support it cannot grow well, if at all.

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Going by the above analogy, it may be held that true faith is contingent upon total obedience to the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him). One’s conduct should provide abundant evidence for one’s faith. If one’s claim to faith is not substantiated by one’s emulation of the Prophet’s model, one does not possess faith. It goes without saying that one who cannot prove one’s faith by this evidence cannot be taken as a believer.

The Qur’an points out,

{But no, by your Lord, they shall not really believe until they have made you (the Prophet) the judge of what is disputed among them and then find no demur in their hearts against what you have decreed and they submit with full submission.} (An-Nisaa’ 4:65)

The verse just quoted is addressed to the hypocrites who made a show of embracing Islam, as they were overawed by its fast-growing strength. However, they maintained close ties with the Jews in and around Madinah and still enjoyed some limited political power, as the Islamic state had not yet been fully established. These hypocrites, therefore, moved their cases to Jewish courts rather than to the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), in the hope that by resorting to bribery and other unfair means they would be able to influence the court and secure judgment in their favor.

The Qur’an declares that this practice of theirs is contrary to their claim to faith. For faith demands that they take the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) as the supreme ruler and abide by his decision. If they fail to do so, their claim to faith cannot be accepted. The Qur’an brings home this point elsewhere thus:

{The faithful are those only who believe in Allah and His Messenger and have not doubted thereafter, and have striven hard with their riches and their lives in the cause of Allah. Such are the sincere ones.} (Al- Hujurat 49:15)

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