Grace and Greatness, we are destined to gather on this occasion of joy and happiness, in the tranquility of the light of Hidayah. Here again, today we are to receive and welcome another one of our brothers who is going to embrace in the religion of God, Islam.
Surah 2 Ayat 256, states thus, “let there be no compulsion in religion : truth stands out from error, whoever rejects evil and believes in God, hand grasp the most trustworthy handhold that never breaks. And God heareth and knoweth all things.”
My beloved brothers and sisters,
Conversion in Islam is very simple and it does not require any elaborate ceremonies. A convert to Islam is also known to have cleansed himself of all his previous sins and is likened to a new born baby.
As a muslim, we believe in Allah with total submission, conviction and faith. Knowledge, as a prerequisite of faith, should be the main priority. This knowledge, provokes a mind that thinks and reasons, making a soul that is able to embrace Islam.
Another prerequiste of faith is sincerity. It means one enters Islam because of Allah and is sincere to accept Allah as the only God and that Mohammad SAW is his prophet.
Beloved Brothers and Sisters under the Grace of Allah.
Next come, submission. 'Islam' is an Arabic term, derived from the word 'Salam' which means submission and obedience. To submit to Allah means to follow His guidance, and one who follows His guidance is called a Muslim. Submission and obedience to Allah brings peace. One must also be convinced that there is no God but Allah, and embraces the faith that the religion of God is Islam. This must also be elevated as a certainty.
Another prerequisite is truthfulness. A convert should also be convinced that Islam is the true religion. Allah says in his Final Book, the Quran :
Certainly the religion with Allah is Islam (Quran 3 :19)
Next is compliance. One who has the faith, believes in the organised belief of Islam which provides the worldview on which the Islamic way of life is based. It also means that the purpose of his life in this world is to do what is right in Islam and to leave what is forbidden in Islam.
Ladies and Gentlemen,my respected audience.
Another prerequisite is Acceptance. It means to accept Allah as the only God and there is none other than Him, Allah SWT.
Finally, there is Love. The Love for God and His prophet, Mohammad SAW. And the belief that God loves his creation. God loves us. God love those who are taqwa or who always obey Him.
My fellow audience, Brothers and sisters.
In Islam, there is no question that has no answer. Every question has an answer. It is also not a religion by force. No one is allowed to force anyone to become a muslim. It is a complete way of life. It prescribes the obligatory acts of service and worship enjoined for him by the Creator. These acts are called the Pillars of Islam. These are the pillars which support the structure of the Islamic Way of life, which is made up of the acts in submission.
My fellow beloved brothers and sisters.
There are five pillars of Islam.
First, the Syahadah. This is the recitation which translates . “ I bear witness that there is no God except Allah and I bear witness that Muhammad is a messenger of Allah”
Second, Prayers. It is the most important of the five duties of Islam. It is to be performed five times a day.
Third, Sawm or Fasting. It is the act of abstaining from eating, drinking, smoking and the conjugal relations during the hours of fasting from dawn to sunset everyday in the month of Ramadhan.
Fourth, Zakah or welfare contribution. This is a form at purification done both materially and spiritually.
Fifth, the pilgrimage to Haj, to the House of Allah, Al-Ka'abah in Mecca. It is performed once in a lifetime by those muslims who have the means to undertake the journey.
Ladies and Gentlemen, respected Brothers and Sisters,
The structure of any building must have pillars, without which no building can be erected. The structure of faith, or Iman, is likewise, also built on pillars called, The Articles of Faith :-
1.Belief in Allah
2.Belief in Allahs Angels
3.Belief in in the Books of Allah – The original Torah, The original Bible and the Quran
4.Belief in the Messengers of Allah.
5.Belief in the Day of Judgement
6.Belief in the supremacy of Divine Will
So, Ladies and Gentlemen, under the Grace of Allah SWT,
Islam predates creation. It comes into existence even before the creation of Adam. That is why it is a misnomer to refer to Islam as “Muhamadism”, as most religions do, which are named after the founder of the religion, partticular race, things, philosophy and so forth. Islam is the name of Allah's Guidance to man revealed though all the prophets, from Adam to Muhammad Peace be upon them all.
My beloved, respected Brothers and Sisters
Let us all pray that our newcomer be blessed by the gracious Lord, Allah SWT. May he be granted with peace through a total submission to Allah's guidance. And let us love him as a brother and as a muslim who has been, and is practicing Islam. It is our duty to give assistance to our new brothers and sisters. Have patience with them, give them good examples and knowledge. Share, interact and socialize with them . show that we care. Be part at a family to them, Be consistent in our follow up. Finally pray for them, and for each other. Above all, love him as we love ourselves, in total submission to Allah s.w.t