Marriage is not only permissible in Islam but it is also greatly encouraged. Allah wishes only the best for His creation, and so whatever He has ordained is surely the best. Marriage creates family, and society is built on family. Broken homes lead to increased societal problems, and we are all witness to the effects today.
During a wedding, it is Sunnah to give a sermon. Ibn Masood (RA) narrated that the Prophet (may peace be upon him) recited the following at weddings:
“All praise is due to Allah. We seek Guidance and forgiveness from Him. We also seek refuge in Him from the evils of our ownselves. Whoever Allah guides, no one can misguide him. Whoever He lets go astray noone can put him back on track. We testify that there is no god but Allah and we testify that Muhammad is Allah’s servant and His messenger.”
After this he (PBUH) added:
O you who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared, and see that you do not die save in the state of submission to Allah. (Surah Ali ‘Imran 3:102)
O People! Fear your Lord Who created you from a single being and out of it created its mate; and out of the two spread many men and women. Fear Allah in Whose name you plead for rights, and heed the ties of kinship. Surely, Allah is ever watchful over you. (Surah Al Nisa’ 4:1)
O you who believe, fear Allah and say the right thing. Allah will make your conduct (affairs) whole and sound and will overlook your errors. Whoever obeys Allah and His Messenger, has indeed attained to a great success. (Surah Al Ahzab 33:70-71)
Notes from the sermon
Many of us may have heard this sermon being read but not many of us have pondered over it. Here are a few things to take note of;
- Returning thanks to Allah: The sermon begins by praising Allah, and that teaches us that marriage is a blessing from Allah. We therefore owe gratitude for being lucky to be amongst those who fulfil the Sunnah of Rasulullah (PBUH)
- Seeking forgiveness: We always commit sin, knowingly or unknowingly. At times, we sin and forget. That is why true believers always seek Allah’s forgiveness. The Prophet (SAW) was sinless, yet he engaged in repentance more than 70 times daily. Besides, the pre-marriage and post-marriage activities might have caused us to build so much sin. It is important for newlyweds to seek forgiveness.
“Be quick in the race for forgiveness from your Lord, and for a Garden whose width is that (of the whole) of the heavens and of the earth, prepared for the righteous.” Surah Al Imran verse 133)
- Seeking protection from the Evil of Nafs (self): Humans are generally inclined towards evil; jealousy, arrogance, greed, hate and so on. The sermon reminds that newlyweds that one must let go of the nafs, the ego and anger and selfishness. That way, they would learn to live together in harmony and build a successful life together if Allah wills.
- Recitation of the Shahadah: The sermon includes recitation of the Shahadah, as a reaffirmation of our Islamic faith. It serves as a reminder that we must always follow the Quran and Sunnah. That includes being kind to our spouses, and fulfilling our duties to one another.
- Taqwa: This is an Arabic word that is quite difficult to translate properly into English. It can be translated as piety, consciousness of Allah and fear of Allah. The newlyweds are reminded that their first responsibility is to Allah. They are reminded that true success comes through taqwa. Allah says in the Quran:
“Verily, the most honourable of you with Allah is that (believer) who has At- Taqwa”. Al Hujrat 49:13
- Maintaining family ties: Surah Al Nisa’ 4:1 places a special importance to family, and reminds us that we must never break family relations. The Prophet (SAW) said that the one who severs family ties will never enter Paradise.”
- Truth as a foundation: Sometimes, marriages fail because they were built on deception and lies. We are reminded to place our trust in Allah and always be truthful. Honesty is one of the most important foundations of a successful marriage and we must try our best to be honest with our spouses.
In the end, the ultimate success belongs to those who follow Allah and His Messenger (SAW). May Allah grant us successful marriages. Amin