الحمد لله رب العالمين، وصلى الله وسلم على نبينا محمد وعلى آله وأصحابه أجمعين، أما بعد
Shaikh Rabee’ bin Haadi Al-Madkhali (hafidhahullaah) stated after citing proofs that the methodology of the Prophets and Messengers (‘alaihimus salaatu was salaam) when they would call the people was that they would begin by calling to Tawheed and combating shirk, the Shaikh said:
It is obligatory upon the true inheritors of the Prophets to adhere to this methodology; and thus it is impermissible for them to oppose it legislatively nor logically (intellectually) – for the following reasons:
Firstly: It is the methodology which Allaah is pleased with for all of the Prophets, so they traversed upon it in the call to their nations – from the first of them until the seal of them; Muhammad (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam).
Hence departing from it is a thwart of the command which has been legislated by Allaah and was put into effect by His Messengers; and in it is an amendment/redress of Allaah as well as of His Messengers and His Books and a disparagement of the Knowledge of Allaah and of His Wisdom – from where they (the perpetrators) do not perceive.
Secondly: The Prophets adhered to it and implemented it, which proves with clear testimony that it is not from the arenas of independent interpretative opinion or judgment.
Thirdly: Allaah has obligated upon our Noble Messenger; whom we have been obligated to follow that he should follow them, and that he should proceed along their methodology. He said after He mentioned eighteen Messengers:
أُولَٰئِكَ الَّذِينَ هَدَى اللَّهُ ۖ فَبِهُدَاهُمُ اقْتَدِهْ
((They are those whom Allaah has guided, so by way of their guidance; follow [their way].)) (Al-An’aam: 90)
Indeed; he (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) followed them by beginning with the call to Tawheed; and he emphasized that in true assurance and with great concern.
Fourthly: Since their call – in its most complete representation; was evidently clear in the call of the Khaleel (beloved friend) of Allaah; Ibraheem – the father of the Prophets and their exemplar, Allaah further emphasized the affair, and so commanded our Prophet Muhammad (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) to follow his methodology, He said:
ثُمَّ أَوْحَيْنَا إِلَيْكَ أَنِ اتَّبِعْ مِلَّةَ إِبْرَاهِيمَ حَنِيفًا ۖ وَمَا كَانَ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ
((Then We revealed to you, [O Muhammad], that you should follow the religion of Ibraheem, who was upon the true religion; and was not of the polytheists.)) (An-Nahl: 123)
The command to follow him is inclusive of observing his religion which is Tawheed and combating shirk, it is inclusive of traversing his methodology in starting with the call to Tawheed.
Allaah, The Most High, has further emphasized the affair also; and thus commanded the nation of Muhammad (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) with following the religion of this Prophet who was Al-Haneef (upon the true religion being disinclined from shirk and sincere upon the worship of Allaah alone), He, The Most High said:
قُلْ صَدَقَ اللَّهُ ۗ فَاتَّبِعُوا مِلَّةَ إِبْرَاهِيمَ حَنِيفًا وَمَا كَانَ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ
((Say [O Muhammad], Allaah has spoken the truth; so follow the religion of Ibraheem who was upon the true religion and he was not of the polytheists.)) (Aal-‘Imraan: 95)
Hence the Islamic Ummah has been commanded with following his religion/way, so just as it is impermissible to oppose his religion/way; then likewise it is impermissible to oppose his methodology in starting with the call to Tawheed and to raze shirk and its means as well as its manifestations.
Fifthly: Allaah, The Most High says in His Decisive, Noble Book:
فَإِن تَنَازَعْتُمْ فِي شَيْءٍ فَرُدُّوهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَالرَّسُولِ إِن كُنتُمْ تُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ خَيْرٌ وَأَحْسَنُ تَأْوِيلًا
((And if you disagree over anything, then refer it to Allaah and the Messenger, if you believe in Allaah and the Last Day. That is the better, and best in final outcome.)) (An-Nisaa: 59)
So if we return back to the Qur’aan we find that the Messengers of Allaah (salawaatullaahi wa salaamuhu ‘alaihim) – all of them; the first thing that they began with when calling to was: Tawheed. Likewise the first thing they prohibited against and warned against was: shirk. We find that Allaah has commanded us to follow them and to undertake their methodology, and if we return back to the Messenger (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam), we find that his call had indeed began with Tawheed and combating shirk, then it ended with that, rather; he combated/fought against all of the manifestations of shirk and its means and its factors.
(Taken from: Silsilah ar-Rasaa-il al-‘Ilmiyyah p.320-321)