God commands respect. The rest earn it

Posted on October 21, 2011

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  “Say : ‘I am only a man like you to whom it has been revealed that your God is but one God; so take a straight course to Him and seek His forgiveness’. And woe to those who associate others with God” – Surah 41 verse 6 of the Holy Qur’an.

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The prophet was commanded to say that he was ‘only a man like you’.

And he was only commanded to speak the truth.

So, in truth, he was only a man like you.

To hold that he did not say so, would be to suggest he was disobedient.

So, in my books, the prophet would have said that he was ‘only a man like you’.

And so he was just a man, like us.

Yet, long after his passing, he is much loved and respected by the Muslim world.

Why?

I think because it is believed that he was true to his Divine calling and honoured the trust placed upon him as a prophet and a messenger.

Malaysianinsider reports that the sermon at the mosques for the Friday congregational prayers today touched on the matter of the lack of respect for the Malay rulers by many Muslims.

“Many Muslims today do not respect the views and authority and in fact question the Sultan heads of the Islamic religious councils”, was apparently said in the course of the sermon, which was prepared by Jakim for delivery at all mosques.

Now, Jakim must surely accept that if the prophet was a man like us, the sultans cannot be more than that.

In fact the sultans, too, surely cannot hold themselves out as not being mere men, like the rest of us.

And like the prophet and the rest of us, the sultans, too, will have to earn our respect.

And our love.

And they  best do that by honouring, in substance and in spirit, the trust reposed upon them as constitutional monarchs.

Jakim probably wont understand this.

Let’s hope the sultans will.