Khutba Summaries

Islam on Backbiting and Slander

Harvest of Our Tongues

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Summary of today’s khutba:

  • Definition of backbiting and slander
    • Prophet ﷺ said, ‘Backbiting means that a man mentions about a person something which is true behind his back.’
    • Done by words, facial expressions, and hand gestures
  • Difference between them
  • What does Islam say about them? “They are major sins strictly forbidden”
  • Why do we gossip?
    • To get things off one’s chest especially in case of hatred
    • To join in with a group of friends
    • To show our superiority and put others down
    • To act funny and joke
    • Out of jealousy or anger
    • Out of pity for someone
    • To relieve boredom
    • To impress others
  • Prohibition of backbiting (Quran 49:12, 24:15, 24:16)
  • Reward of controlling our tongue: “He who protects his tongue from unlawful utterances and his private parts from zina, I shall guarantee him entrance into Paradise.” (Bukhari, Muslim)
  • Prohibition of listening to gossip (Quran 17:36)
    Prophet ﷺ said, “Whoever defends the honor of his brother, Allah will protect his face from the Fire on the Day of Resurrection.” (Silsilah as-Sahihah)
  • Best Muslim as defined by our Prophet ﷺ: “He is the one from whom Muslims are safe from the evil of his tongue and hands.” (Muslim)
  • When is backbiting allowed?
    • complaint to someone in authority who can address the wrong when an injustice has been done
    • seeking religious guidance from a Muslim scholar
    • to get help in changing a wrong or to prevent a disaster
    • consultation in matters of marriage, business, asking about a neighbor before moving, etc
    • in these cases we are allowed reveal only as much as necessary about the person.

May Allah keep our tongues safe from the sin of gossip and backbiting.

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