The 7 Destructive Sins

This week’s khutbah was on the 7 destructive sins.

The sins vary between grave and minor sins. Some sins are graver than others. Prophet Muhammed SAWS warned us from the all sins, whether they are grave or minor. In some situations, he described some of the sins with specific attributes, and he assigned signs for other sins in other situations. Among these sins are the mention of the seven great destructive sins.

The imam spoke of a hadith in which the prophet SAWS said:

“To join others in worship along with Allah, to practice magic, to kill the life which Allah has forbidden except for a just cause, (according to Islamic law), to eat up Riba (usury), to eat up an orphan’s wealth, to give back to the enemy and fleeing from the battlefield at the time of fighting, and to accuse, chaste women, who never even think of anything touching chastity and are good believers.”

Dear brothers and sisters, in this Hadeeth, there are important rules for protecting the religion, honour, self, money and mind; therefore, the Prophet SAWS warned us from committing these seven great destructive sins.

First sin is of associating partners with Allah SWT or polytheism. Scholars state that there are two types we need to be wary of. The major one is simply associating partners with Allah SWT. We know how to define this but alongside that there is minor acts of polytheism which we need to be wary of. These are acts such as magic, dealing in usury and fortune telling. As Muslims we need to steer clear of these as well as guide others away from these destructive acts upon the community.

Second sin is of Magic. This is from the greatest of sins as its considered part of associating a lord with Allah. Acts which fall into this category range from going to spiritual healers that use magic to help to fortune tellers and horoscopes. The imam mentioned the following hadith in relation to this:

“The Messenger of Allah said: ‘Whoever goes to a fortuneteller and believes what he says, he has disbelieved in that which was revealed to Muhammad.'”

We need to remind ourselves that the remedy for tests that face us in this life can be found in duas to Allah SWT through the ayats of the Quran and the duas mentioned by our Prophet SAWS. Nothing and nobody else is needed as a middleman as the solution has already been given to us.

The third sin is Killing the life without a just cause. This is a crime that causes disorder and chaos in the society. Allah SWT warns us of this in the Quran in various ayats and the imam reminds us of Sura Maida, ayat 32 which says:

“whoever kills a soul unless for a soul or for corruption [done] in the land – it is as if he had slain mankind entirely”

Dear brothers and sisters, in a time where we are told by the media of killings and murders being committed in the name of Islam, we need to equip ourselves with knowledge of our faith and educate those who are unfortunate enough to believe what they are seeing through the media.

The fourth sin is of usury. Such is the strategy of Shaitaan that even the language has changed to make this more acceptable in society as the word “interest” is used to describe this forbidden act. We are in a position now where it is ingrained into the fabric of our society and we need our scholars to guide us on how to live free of this destructive sin.

Simply put, interest is the tool for oppression and inequality in society and whilst it exists, the wealth will drip feed from the hands of the many into the hands of the few elite. It is a system designed to cause chaos and destruction in society and this is why it is so expressly forbidden in Islam.

The fifth is on the rights of the orphan. The orphan is the person who lost his father in his childhood and did not grow up to an age of maturity.

Islam cared for orphans’ properties and rights and assigned for every orphan someone to be responsible for his growing up, education, developing his money and training him to be able to care for his own affairs.  Anyone taking their money illegitimately has been promised great punishment, especially due to the nature of taking from an innocent child.

Sixth is about when Muslims are caught in a physical conflict. Allah SWT has assigned rules and obligations to all aspects of life and this is no exception. Allah SWT has promised the believers, who sacrifice their selves and properties for the cause of Allah, to enter paradise. Also, He severely warned those who give back to the enemy and fleeing from the battlefield at the time of fighting. Although we aren’t in that situation today, we can still take a lesson from this and that is one of eliminating cowardice in one’s heart through belief in the plan of Allah SWT.

And lastly, the Messenger of Allah SAWS warns Muslims from accusing the chaste women.

Chastity is the essence of humanity’s honour. Accusing the chaste woman destroys the family institution and tears the unity of the community; therefore, the person who commits this sin is sentenced to punishment in this worldly life in addition to the severe torture in the hereafter. It should also be noted that the scholars have declared this applicable in women accusing chaste men as well.

Allah SWT speaks of this in Sura Al-Noor, ayat 4 which says:

“And those who accuse chaste women and then do not produce four witnesses – lash them with eighty lashes and do not accept from them testimony ever after. And those are the defiantly disobedient”

Dear brothers and sisters, these were the 7 destructive sins. They are outlined because collectively they not only harm the individual but contribute to a broken society and the chaos that ensues as a result. As ambassadors to the truth, it is our responsibility to set the example by steering clear of these sins, even if all around us are oblivious to their harmful nature and are engaging in them.

May Allah SWT protect us from the 7 destructive sins. May Allah SWT make it easy for us to avoid them and may Allah SWT reward us in our efforts in avoiding them.

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