There will always be Scholars

Translated from:

http://www.binbaz.org.sa/mat/3314

Question:

From what is being spread amongst the students of knowledge and specifically in the colleges and institutions of knowledge is their statement: ‘Knowledge and its people has left’ and that ‘There is not found anyone in the institutions of knowledge who is learning except that he just wants degrees and the dunya.’  So how does one reply to that?  And what is the ruling on pursuing something from the dunya and degrees with the niyyah (intention) of seeking knowledge, in order to benefit oneself and others?

Answer (by Shaikh Bin Baz):

This speech is not correct. And it is not befitting to say such things and the likes of this.  And whoever says this destroys the people.  He has indeed destroyed them.  What is befitting is encouragement and incitement to seek knowledge, and devoting one’s time to that, and patience and forbearance upon that. Also, having good thoughts for the students of knowledge, except for the one who is known for something different than that.

And when death came to Mu’aadh, from what is mentioned, is that he advised those around him to seek knowledge.  And he said, ‘Indeed Knowledge and Imaan are in two places.  So whoever wants them will find them in these two places.’ Meaning: in Allah’s tremendous Book (Qur’an) and the Sunnah of His trustworthy Messenger-sallallahu  alayhe wa sallam….Knowledge will be taken away by the deaths of the Scholars. However, there will not cease to be- praise be to Allah- a victorious group upon the truth.

About this the Prophet – alayhe as-salaatu was-salaam- said (translated): ‘Allah will not take away the knowledge by removing it from the chests of the mankind, rather the knowledge will be taken away by the deaths of the Scholars, until when there are no more Scholars, the people will take ignorant people as their leaders.  They (these ignorant people) will be asked and they will give verdicts without knowledge.  They are astray and mislead others.’  Bukhari collected it in his Saheeh. [hadeeth found in Bukhari, Book of Knowledge, ch. How will the knowledge be taken away كيف يقبض العلم ]

And this is what is feared- it is feared that the ignorant ones will give fatwas and teach-they are misguided and misguide others.  And this speech which was mentioned about the knowledge leaving, and there doesnt remain except such-and-such- it is feared this will hold back (or prevent) some of the people. But the individual who is resolute, with deep insight, this will not hold him back.  Rather, it will incite him to seek knowledge until he fills the gap.

And the sincere one, who has understanding, who has insight and is truthful, the likes of this speech won’t hinder him.  Rather he will go forth and work very hard, persevere and learn, and he will hasten   (in these things) so that his desire for knowledge is strengthened, and he will fill the gap that these people who said this claimed – that no one remained (seeking knowledge with sincerity).

And it has occurred that the knowledge has decreased and most of its people are gone, but it is indeed the case- and to Allah belongs all the praise, that there will not cease to be a victorious group upon the truth- as the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said (translated), “There won’t cease to be a victorious group from my ummah upon the truth, they will not be harmed by those who oppose them, nor by those who abandon them, until the command of Allah comes” [hadeeth with this specific wording found in at Tabarani’s “al mujam al awsat”, but ahaadeeth with wordings similar to this and the same meaning found in Bukhari and Muslim]

So it is upon us to work very hard in seeking knowledge, and that we  encourage each other upon that, and that we are intent upon filling the gap.  And that we establish what is waajib in our city and other than it, using the desired sharee’ah proofs for that with the desire to benefit the Muslims, and to teach them.  And it is befitting for us to encourage each other to have ikhlas and truthfulness in seeking knowledge.

Whoever wants a degree so that it will aid him in spreading knowledge and calling to the good,  then that is good.  And if someone wants wealth to aid him, there is no harm in him studying to learn and getting a degree from that which will help him spread knowledge, so that the people will accept this knowledge from him.  And there is no harm in him getting paid for that.  And indeed if it weren’t for Allah-subhaanahu-and then after that the wealth,  most people wouldn’t be able to teach and spread the da’wah.

The wealth helps the Muslim in seeking knowledge, in fulfilling his need, and spreading the da’wah to the people. And when Umar – radiallahu anhu- did some work, the Prophet -sallallahu alayhe wa sallam- gave him wealth.  So Umar said- “Give this to someone who is poorer than myself.”  So the Prophet -sallallahu alayhe wa sallam- said (translated) ‘Take this wealth and either keep it or give it in charity, and when wealth comes to you while you are neither desirous for it nor begging, then take it  otherwise, don’t let your heart long for it” [hadeeth from Muslim, Book of Zakah, ch. The permissibility of taking money that is given to him without him asking for it  إباحة الأخذ لمن أعطي من غير مسألة ]

And the Prophet-sallallahu alayhe wa sallam-gave (wealth) in order to unite the hearts and desiring (that they become Muslim) until they entered the deen of Allah in groups. And if giving them wealth was haraam, he wouldn’t have given them. Rather, he gave wealth before and after the conquest of Makkah.

And on the Day of the Conquest of Makkah, he gave some people 100 camels.  And he used to give like a person who does not fear poverty-alayhe as-salaatu was-salaam-desiring that they become Muslim and calling them to Islam.

And indeed Allah-subhaanahu wa ta’aala made a right in the zakah for the people who had their hearts united by the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam)  (see العباب الزاخر definition of مؤلفة here http://www.baheth.info/index.jsp -they were kuffar and the Prophet -sallallahu alayhe wa sallam was commanded to give to them wealth ).  And Allah made a right for them in the baitul maal (treasury).  And Allah made a right for other than them (in the treasury) for the teachers and judges and others from the Muslims.  And Allah is the Granter of Success.

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