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General Issues Pertaining to the Prayer
  The Excellence of Prayer and Its Beings A Means of Expiation of Sins
Author: Hussain al-Awaa'ishah
Source: As-Salaat Wa Atharuhaa Fee Ziyaadatil Eemaan (Trans Abu Iyaad)
Article ID : IBD050011  [16759]  
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Uthmaan (ra) said: The Messenger of Allaah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "There is no male muslim who when the time for the obligatory prayer approaches, beautifies its wudhoo,and performs it while beautifying its khushoo' and its rukoo' except that it becomes an expiation for the sins that were before it, as long as he did not commit any major sins and this is for all time."[12]

Abu Ayyoob (ra) said that the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) used to say: "Every prayer reduces the sins which are before it."[13]

Sa'd bin Abi Waqqaas (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: There were two brothers and one of them perished forty nights before the other one. I mentioned the excellence of the first one to die in the presence of the Messenger of Allaah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and the Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Was not the second one a muslim (also)?" They said: Of course, and there was nothing wrong with him. Then the Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "And what will inform you where his prayer has made him reach? Indeed the example of the prayer is like the example of a fresh and copious river which is by the door of one of you . He immerses himself in it five times every day. So what do think would remain from his impurities? Indeed you do not know where his prayer has made him reach."[14]

Abu Hurairah (ra) said: There were two men who became muslims at the hand of the Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). One of them became a martyr and the other one was delayed for a year (i.e. his death). Talha bin Ubaidullaah said: I then saw the one whose death was delayed entered into Paradise before the martyr and was amazed at that. I woke up and mentioned that to the Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and the Messenger of Allaah said: "Did he not fast the month of Ramadan after him and pray six thousand rakah and likewise such and such amount of rakah in a year's prayers?" In the the Saheehah of Ibn Hibbaan there is the addition: "Between them is a distance greater than that which is between the heavens and the earth."[15]

Ibn Umar (ra) said: The Messenger of Allaah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "When the servant standsto pray all his sins are taken and are placed on his head and shoulders. Every time he bows or prostrates the sins fall away from him."[16]

Thawbaan (ra) said: The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Be upright and steadfast and you will never be able to count (your good deeds) and know that the best of your actions is the prayer. None but a believer maintains wudhoo."[17]

Abu Maalik al-Ash'aree (ra) said: The Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Cleanliness is one half of Eemaan, 'Alhamdulillaah' fills the scales and 'Subhaanallaah' and 'Alhamdulillaah' fill what is between the heavens and the earth. Prayer is light and Charity is an evidence. Patience is an illumination and the Qur'an is a proof in your favour or against you."[18]

Abu Dharr (ra) said: The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) came out in the winter when the leaves were falling. He took a branch off the tree and the leaves began to fall off it. He (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "O Abu Dharr." I said: At your service O Messenger of Allaah. He (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Indeed the muslim servant performs a prayer, desiring by it nothing but the face of Allaah and his sins fall from him just like these leaves fall from this tree."[19]

Rabee'ah bin Ka'b said: I used to stay with the Messenger of Allaah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and I came to him while he performed wudhoo. He said: "Ask me." I said: I ask you for your company in Paradise. He (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Ask me for other than that." I said: It is the same. He (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Then help me (to do that) by increasing your prostrations."[20]

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