The Sermon for Necessities

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The Sermon for Necessities (Arabic: Khutbat-ul-Haajah) is a popular sermon (khutbah) in the Islamic world (particularly as the introduction to a khutbah during Jumu'ah). It is used as an introduction to numerous undertakings of a Muslim.[1]

History of the Sermon[edit]

The Sermon for Necessities was initially taught by Muhammad as part of the Sunnah. From Muhammad, the sermon has been reported by numerous Sahaba including: Abd Allah ibn Mas'ud, Abu Musa Ashaari, `Abd Allah ibn `Abbas, Jabir ibn Abd-Allah, Aisha and Sahl ibn Sa'd.[2] The use of the sermon had been neglected for some years until certain scholars such as Ahmad ibn Muhammad al-Tahawi, Ibn Taymiyyah,[3] and Ibn Qayyim Al-Jawziyya and others revived it. Then its use was neglected again in the later generations until Muhammad Nasiruddin al-Albani revived it and its usage began to spread again, until it has reached its current widespread use and popularity.[4]

Text of the Sermon[edit]

The Sermon for Necessities is composed of the following text (i.e. the English translation of the original Arabic text) as taught by Muhammad, including Ayat (Verses) from three different Qur’anic Suras (Chapters):[5]

After saying “To proceed,” the person then continues upon what they planned to say, write or do.

Areas of applicability of the Sermon[edit]

The Sermon for Necessities is used in the following occasions:

  • To begin lessons,[6] or open classes.[7]
  • To begin books,[6] articles,[7] or treatises.[7] The Salaf-us-Salih (pious predecessors) would commence their books with this sermon e.g. al-Tahawi included it in the introduction to his book Mushkil-ul-Athaar and Ibn Taymiyyah also constantly mentioned the sermon in his writings.[8]
  • To open sermons.[9]
  • To open the sermon during the marriage ceremony.[8]
  • To open the Friday prayer (Jumu'ah) sermon.[9]
  • By teachers to open their gatherings, their teaching of the Qur’an, their teaching of the Sunnah, their teaching of Fiqh and their admonishing and cautioning the people.[3]
  • For various other affairs[10] and necessities when Muslims wish to address one another,[3] i.e. the Sermon for Necessities has a general usage and prescription during every righteous occasion.[3]

However, the sermon is excluded from business contracts and transactions.[11] Furthermore, the sermon is a Sunnah,[7] but it is not obligatory to the point that it cannot be left off, i.e., it can be left off at some times. However, it cannot be abandoned completely.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ al-Albani 2006
  2. ^ al-Albani 2006, pp. 6-19
  3. ^ a b c d al-Albani 2006, p. 24
  4. ^ a b al-Albani 2006, p. 23
  5. ^ al-Albani 2006, pp. 4-5—Text of the Sermon for Necessities (Khutbat-ul-Haajah) in Arabic, with English translation
  6. ^ a b al-Albani 2006, p. 3
  7. ^ a b c d al-Albani 2006, pp. 22-23
  8. ^ a b al-Albani 2006, p. 21
  9. ^ a b al-Albani 2006, pp. 21, 22-23
  10. ^ al-Albani 2006, pp. 3,21
  11. ^ al-Albani 2006, p. 22