Why should we pray?

Allaah says in the Qur’an:

“And I (Allaah) created not the jinns and humans except they should worship Me (Alone).” [Qur’an 51:56]

When contemplating on this verse from the Qur’an we have to realise that the sole purpose of our creation, existence and being is nothing except to worship Allaah. As a result we must continue asking ourselves if we are fulfilling the purpose for which we were created.

Take the example of a brand new car that has countless features from a CD/MP3 player, DVD player, games console, satellite navigation, Bluetooth control and many other features that are not usually seen in cars. When someone learns of these features in a car they may become astonished and amazed! However, what would their reaction be if the engine was not able to start and drive the car around? If that was the case it would not be much of a car!

It’s the same with human beings. Yes, we are the most superior of creation. We can do many things that the animals in the jungle would be jealous of! However, do we fulfil the reason for which we were created?

One of the many ways that we are lacking in the worship of our Lord is our abandonment of prayer despite the fact that it would be the first thing that a Muslim is asked on the Day of Judgment by his Lord!

Allaah said in the Qur’an:

“Guard strictly (the five obligatory) the prayers especially the middle prayer (i.e., the best prayer – `Asr).” [Qur’an 2:238]

Some of us even after knowing about this verse still make excuses to not perform the prayers. We come up with excuses like “but I do this sin and that sin so what is the point of praying?” Perhaps they are not aware of what the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) meant when he asked his companions:

“Say, if there were a river at the door of one of you in which he takes a bath five times a day, would any soiling remain on him?” The companions replied, “No soiling would be left on him.” He (peace be upon him) said, ” That is the five (obligatory) prayers. Allaah obliterates all sins as a result of performing them.”

Imagine what prayer would do the deeds of most us if only we performed the five daily prayers regularly and on time! The Prophet (peace be upon him) has stated that praying five times a day does to sins what water does to dirt!

The Prophet (peace be upon him) also said:
“The five (daily) prayers and the Friday (prayer) to the Friday (prayer) expiate whatever (minor sins) may be committed in between, so long as major sins are avoided.”

We should never ever allow ourselves to think that we are not “good enough” to pray! Allaah will forgive our sins when we perform our prayers so let us not make excuses.

Not only will Allaah forgive our sins but Allaah will give us the ability to abandon the sins completely:

“Verily, the prayer prevents from Al-Fahsha’ (i.e., great sins of every kind, unlawful sexual intercourse) and Al-Munkar (i.e., disbelief, polytheism, and every kind of evil, wicked deed).” [Qur’an 29:45]

Think about what that means! All those bad things that deep down we hate doing, whether it be smoking, listening to music, drinking, mingling with boys & girls, clubbing, sheesha and countless other deeds that make us shameful, Allaah will actually give us the means to abandon them just by performing the prayer which will allow us to become a better Muslim and one of the best examples for others to follow!

In addition to knowing the benefits of prayer we must also realise what the consequences of abandoning the prayer are. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“Between a man and disbelief and paganism is the abandonment of prayer.”

Meaning that the person who is regular in performing prayer, will raise a wall between himself and disbelief and that the one that does not perform prayer does not have a wall which separates him from disbelief! Leaving prayer is like demolishing the wall that separates Islam from disbelief.

Imagine what that could mean! Any good deeds that we have done could be rendered null and void just because we did not pray our five daily prayers!

The next time it is time for prayer, do not forget to pray! Think of the rewards that have been promised:

“For those who have done good is the best (reward, i.e. Paradise) and even more (i.e. having the honour of glancing at the Countenance of Allaah) Neither darkness nor dust nor any humiliating disgrace shall cover their faces. They are the dwellers of Paradise, they will abide therein forever.” [Qur’an 10:26]

“And those who believed (in the Oneness of Allaah and His Messengers and whatever they brought) and did righteous deeds, will be made to enter Gardens under which rivers flow, – to dwell therein forever (i.e.in Paradise), with the permission of their Lord. Their greeting therein will be: Salaam (peace!)” [Qur’an 14:23]

[Article written by 1Dawah]

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