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Hadith on Fitnah: Five tests before the Last Hour

📖Sunan Ibn Majah 4019
It was narrated that ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar said: “The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) turned to us and said: ‘O Muhajirun, there are five things with which you will be tested, and I seek refuge with Allah lest you live to see them: Immorality never appears among a people to such an extent that they commit it openly, but plagues and diseases that were never known among the predecessors will spread among them. They do not cheat in weights and measures but they will be stricken with famine, severe calamity and the oppression of their rulers. They do not withhold the Zakah of their wealth, but rain will be withheld from the sky, and were it not for the animals, no rain would fall on them. They do not break their covenant with Allah and His Messenger, but Allah will enable their enemies to overpower them and take some of what is in their hands. Unless their leaders rule according to the Book of Allah and seek all good from that which Allah has revealed, Allah will cause them to fight one another.’”

This narration from Sunan Ibn Majah describes five tests that people will face if they indulge in immoral acts, cheating, withholding zakat, and breaking covenants with Allah and His Messenger. The Prophet (ﷺ) sought refuge with Allah from these tests because they bring great harm and suffering to people.

  1. The first test is that if people indulge in immorality openly and excessively, they will be afflicted with new and unprecedented plagues and diseases. This is a warning that immoral behavior can have severe consequences on health and well-being.
  2. The second test is that if people cheat in weights and measures, they will face severe calamities such as famine, oppression from their rulers, and other difficulties. This shows that dishonesty and cheating lead to negative consequences not only for individuals but for society as a whole.
  3. The third test is that if people withhold zakat, they will face a shortage of rain, which can cause drought and famine. This highlights the importance of fulfilling one’s religious obligations, especially regarding charity, which has a direct impact on the environment and the well-being of people.
  4. The fourth test is that if people break their covenant with Allah and His Messenger, they will face defeat and humiliation at the hands of their enemies. This emphasizes the importance of upholding agreements and covenants, as they are essential for maintaining trust and stability in society.
  5. The fifth test is that if people’s leaders do not rule according to the Book of Allah and seek good from it, they will face internal conflict and strife. This highlights the importance of just and fair leadership based on divine guidance, as it leads to a harmonious society and avoids internal conflicts and divisions.
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