Bismillah. One of the lessons we learned earlier was that part of effective communication is an executive summary. So applying that, here’s a new approach to this series from now onwards, in sha Allah:
- When does Allah [SWT] strengthen the heart? And how does He do it?
- Daw’ah techniques: Tawheed first.
- Your attitude determines your altitude, i.e. the more determined you are to make sacrifices, the higher Allah [SWT] will raise you in ranks.
And We made their hearts firm and strong when they stood up and said: “Our Lord is the Lord of the heavens and the earth, never shall we call upon any god other than Him; if we did, we should indeed have uttered an enormity in disbelief. (14)
Strengthening of the Hearts
وَرَبَطْنَا – is from ra-ba-ta and it means to tie something up tightly. When Allah ta’ala does “rabat” of someone’s heart, it means He gave them strength and patience and removed any impatience, doubt and shakiness from them. This is how Allah [SWT] strengthens hearts. When the heart is tied tightly, the person is firm upon their emaan, they have determination of patience and the strength to say true speech. Ashaabul Kahf were only youth with no authority, but when did Allah [SWT] strengthen their hearts? Idh qaamu, when they stood up for Allah [SWT]! Allah made their hearts firm and gave them courage and confidence to stand up to their people when they took initiative and action, announcing and proclaiming tawheed and rejecting falsehood.
Daw’ah Techniques: Tawheed First
We learn a da’wah technique from these youth in how they introduced Allah to their people. Before denouncing their shirk, they taught them tawheed. They said: <<رَبُّنَا رَبُّ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ لَنْ نَدْعُوَ مِنْ دُونِهِ إِلَـٰهًا>> – Our Rabb is the Rabb of the heavens and the earth, never shall we invoke any other god besides Him. The definition of Rabb is: Khaaliq (Creator), Mudabbir (Planner), Maalik (King/Owner): the One who created us, the One who Sustains us and the One who owns us. They are proclaiming ruboobiyyah here, that Allah is the Rabb of everything. Then by mentioning duaa (نَدْعُوَ), which means both salah and supplication, they are claiming uloohiyyah, that Allah is the only object worthy of their worship.
Then they say to their people that if they call besides other than Allah, <<لَقَدْ قُلْنَا إِذًا شَطَطًا>> – ‘then indeed we would say excessive transgression’. شَطَطًا is from sheen-ta-ta and literally it means to go beyond the limits, to be far and to cross the limits. Qawlun Shatat is a speech based on falsehood, one that is distanced from truth and a statement of great transgression.
We learn from this ayah how to call people to Allah ta’ala. Ashaabul Kahf described Allah azza wa jal to their people by stating: Allah is the Only Rabb and the Only Ilaah, and calling upon others besides Him is excessive transgression.
Your Attitude Determines Your Altitude
Another lesson we derive from this verse is the emaan of Ashaabul Kahf. They were the youth of the city and they sacrificed so much to take care of their emaan. How is our emaan as youth? Their emaan was so precious to them that they couldn’t give it up at any cost so they sacrificed greatly for Allah: by leaving their homes, their family, their city to dwell in a cave. They made these sacrifices for Allah ta’ala and what did Allah [SWT] do? He mentioned them in the Qur’an and their story is recited by billions throughout the ages! The lesson being, when we sacrifice for Allah ta’ala, He will protect us, increase us in ranks and grant us better.
Furthermore, Ashaabul Kahf were youth and standing up for the truth. To worship Allah as youth is a very unique and difficult thing, which is why Allah states many times in these verses “innahum fityah, indeed they were youth.” One of the seven under the shade of Allah’s Throne is a youth who grows up in the worship of Allah. Allah loves it when a person who is young in age is serving the deen of Allah and working for Him.
WAllahu alam – And Allah knows best.