The Importance of acquiring knowledge pertaining to ^aqeedah (Belief)
All praise is due to Allah The Exalted, and may Allah raise the rank of our beloved Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him, his kind relatives and companions, and protect his nation from that which he feared for them thereafter;
قال تعالى:" فاعلم أنه لا إله إلا الله واستغفر لذنبك وللمؤمنين والمؤمنات "
This Ayah Means:
<< O Muhammad, be firm in knowing that no One is God except Allah and ask Allah for forgiveness>>. In this Ayah, Allah ordered the knowledge of Tawhid prior to the ordering of making Istighfar. This is because the knowledge of Tawhid entails knowing about Allah and His messenger, and it is the best of all knowledge in Islam.
Imam Ash-shafi^iyy said: < I mastered the knowledge of Tawhid before mastering the knowledge of the rules of the religion>.
Imam Abu Hanifah said <Know that acquiring the knowledge of tawhid is more important than acquiring the knowledge pertaining to the rules of the religion>.
Brothers in Islam, the matters of the religion are not all at the same rank; rather some matters are more important than others. Hence, what is important is to comply with the rulings conveyed by the messenger of Allah. This is only acquired by attending the circles of knowledge.
Imam an-Nawawiyy said: < Time is best spent in acquiring the knowledge of Religion>
Hence, the livelihood of Islam lies in the knowledge of the religion. Knowledge is the weapon for refuting the fabrications made by deviants like the Mushabbihah (those who liken Allah to His creations). So the person who is ignorant of the matters of the religion, could still be exposed to the false beliefs uttered by the mushabihah. We seek refuge with Allah from this. This is why Imam Abu Al-Hasan Al-Ash^ariyy may Allah accept his deeds said <The best of the knowledge is the knowledge about Allah and His messenger >>.
So the most important of knowledge is that which pertains to belief, Imam An-Nawawiyy said: It is a communal obligation for there to be amongst the muslims those capable of elucidating the belief of Ahlu sunna wal- jama^ah with the logical proofs and the proofs from the Qur’an and Hadith in order to refute the misleading beliefs of the Mushabiha whom liken Allah to his creations by claiming that He is a body; occupying places and directions; ascending and descending and being suspended in the upper direction.
Know firmly brothers in Islam that the one who likens Allah to his creations and dies on that belief will never smell the pleasant scent of Paradise. He will enter Hellfire and will never come out of it. Allah mentioned in the Holy Qur’an << Allah dammed the blasphemers and prepared hellfire for them in which they will dwell forever; they will have no savior or supporter>>.
Brothers in Islam, remaining steadfast on the belief of Ahlu-sunnah is the path for success in the Hereafter because Islam is a condition for the acceptance of every good deed.
Among the fundamentals of belief, is to believe that Allah does not resemble the humans, or the Angels, or the Jinn, or any other creations. Allah is clear of all imperfections. He created everything and does not resemble anything.
The scholars repeatedly emphasized the clear evidence from the Qur’an, Hadith and scholarly consensus proving that the knowledge of Tawhid is ranked the highest among all knowledge. These scholars include Abu Hanifah, Imam Ash-Shafi^iyy, Imam Malik the caliph ^Umar Ibn ^Abd Al ^aziz and many others from the righteous Salaf.
The Ultimate success is to be successful in the hereafter. The person who acquires the knowledge as it is prescribed in Islam enters the gateway to success in this life and the hereafter. So be eager to acquire that knowledge. Be eager to be around the scholars. Be eager to associate with the scholars: The prophet peace be upon him said << The scholars on earth are like the stars in the heavens with which one is guided through the darkness of land and sea>.
We humbly ask Allah to enlighten us with the light of Knowledge, and keep us
steadfast to the path of truth and righteousness Ameen.