LOVE GOD AND DO GOOD
by William Bashyr Pickard
GOD IS ONE. Humanity is one brotherhood. So whoever of my brothers and sisters may chance to read this message should rejoice in the realisation that God is one and that humanity is one brotherhood.
Before proceeding further with my own discourse, I have thought it best to set in array before the reader a few shining flowers, culled from the resplendent gardens of the pages of the Qur'aan. Even thus:
"God is the light of the heavens and the earth. His light is as a niche which is a lamp: the lamp is in a glass, the glass is as a brightly shining star, lit from a blessed olive tree, neither eastern nor western."
(Qur'aan, Chapter 24, The Light, v. 35)
"And God's is what is in the heaven and what is in the earth, that He may reward those who do evil according to what they do and that He may reward those who do good with goodness."
(Qur'aan Chapter 53, The Star, v. 31)
"Man shall have nothing but what he strives for. His striving shall soon be seen. They shall be rewarded for it with the fullest reward. And to your Lord is the goal."
( Qur'aan Chapter 53, The Star, vv. 39-42)
"Consider the heavens full of stars. God, the Mighty, the Praised."
"Whose is the kingdom of the heavens and the earth: and God is witness of all things."
(Qur'aan Chapter 85, The Star, vs. 1-3 & 9)
"Surely as for those who believe and do good, they shall have gardens beneath which rivers flow, that is the great achievement. Surely the might of your Lord is great. Surely He it is Who originates and reproduces.And He is the Forgiving, the Loving, Lord of the dominion the Glorious."
( Qur'aan Chapter 85, The Star, vs. 11 to 15)
"And certainly we have made the Qur'aan easy for remembrance, but is there anyone who will mind?"
(Qur'aan Chapter 54, The Moon, v. 17).
"Lord of the East and Lord of the West.
Which then of the bounties of your Lord will you reject?"
(Qur'aan Chapter 55, The Beneficent, v. 17 & 18)
"Everyone on it must pass away. And there will endure forever the Person of your Lord, the Lord of glory and honour.
"Which then of the bounties of the Lord will you reject?
(Qur'aan Chapter 55, The Beneficent, v. 26 - 28)
"Say: I seek refuge in the Lord of the dawn. From the evil of what He has created. And from the evil of the utterly dark night when it comes. And from the evil of those who cast evil suggestions in firm resolution. And from the evil of the envious one when he envies."
(Qur'aan, Chapter 113, The Dawn, v. 1 to 5)
"Surely We have given you an abundance of good. Therefore, pray to your Lord and make sacrifice."
(Qur'aan Chapter 108, The Abundance of Goods, v. 1 & 2)
"Consider the soul and its perfection. So He intimated to it by inspiration its deviating from truth and its guarding against evil. He will indeed be successful who purifies it. And he will indeed fail who corrupt it."
(Qur'aan Chapter 91, The Sun, vs. 7 to 10)
Let me now append a very brief commentary on the above luminous verses of the Qur'aan.
Firstly, when we realise that there is only One God, Light of the Universe, Lord of the Universe, Bountiful and Beneficent, Merciful and Mighty, what other religion is possible for us with our eyes thus opened and our hearts filled with gratitude for all these wonders amidst which we move. What other religion is there I say for us but glad submission to the One Supreme? And what is this religion of submission to the Will of God but verily Islam?
And those who submit they are Muslims: so how can any one of us (who is awake and aware) be otherwise than a Muslim, gladly and unforgettingly worshipping the One Supreme, the Mighty, the Merciful, and ever doing good and withdrawing with a complete withdrawal from evil?
And now, secondly, we come to consider and to arrive in our minds at a sure conclusion concerning the doing of evil and the doing of good. It is rather a matter of general observation than of studied proof to state that evil is rewarded with evil and that good is rewarded with good. The action and its results are inextricably interwoven. There lies no road of escape.
By this we do not mean to say that the evil result, the evil reward, will endure forever. Far from that: God is Most Merciful, the Greatest Forgiver. But let us be assured that the evil consequence of an evil action will come home to the evil-doer whether immediately or at some later time - the pangs and suffering of the mind, who know? The anxieties and restless expectations that render life tasteless and unattainable, who knows?
And now as regard good: the good reward is bound up inextricably with the good action and whether immediately or at some later date, will come home to the doer of good. This blessed reward is likened to a fair garden.
Therein is delight and a pervading peace, indestructible, and the attainment thereof lies often by way of sacrifice and selflessness seeking to give good to others rather than going out to grasp good, or imagined good, for oneself. When all humanity is the field, how wide is the reward.
Who can understand the Goodness and the Bounty and the gracious Forgiveness of God!
To Whose Name be praise!