Every Muslim knows that the key to Paradise is the statment, "There
is none worthy of worship except Allah." Yet too many Muslims simply
rely upon this statment and believe that as long as they have made this
statment, nothing will harm them. They think will be granted Paradise
because of this mere verbal statment of the Shahadah.
There is no question that the mere saying of," I bear witness that
there is none worthy of worship except Allah and I bear witness that
Muhammad is His servant and messenger," is not sufficient for salvation.
In fact, the hypocrites used to make this statment quite often yet Allah
describes them as liars and says that they shall abide in the lowest abyss
of the Hell-fire.
As many scholars state, though, this statment or testimony is the key
Paradise. The famous Follower Wahb ibn Munabbih was once asked, " Isn't
the statment of la ilaha illa-llah the key to Paradise?" He answered,
"Yes, but every key has ridges. If you come with the key that has the right
ridges, the door will open for you. Yet if you do not have the right ridges
the door will not open for you." That is, it is saying must meet certain
conditions. These conditions are what will differentiate the person who
will benefit from his making of that statment from the one who will not
benefit from that statment, no matter how many times a day he may have made
Before discussing the conditions of the Shahadah, there is one more
point that I feel compelled to make. That is, some people have a tendency
to take one hadith or one verse and then based on that one text, they will
make some conclusion that, for example, whoever simply says," There is no
God except Allah," will enter Paradise. But, actually, we should all realize
that all of the Quran and Hadith complement each other and explain one
another. To find the correct position on any one question, one must bring
together all of the related verses and hadith and see what the true Islamic
postion is of that question. The same is true for the conditions of the
If we study the verses of the Quran and the Hadith of the Prophet (peace
be upon him), we will find that the conditions of the shahadah are seven,
eight or nine in number depending on how we look at them. It is important
that all of us make sure that we are meeting these conditions in our own
lives and in our own testimony of faith. We must do our best to satisfy
these conditions before it is too late and our testimony will be no avail
whatsoever. It is not simply for the sake of teaching these conditions.
Indeed, there is no benefit to that. But it is, instead, for all of us to
look to ourselves and to make sure that we are actually meeting these
conditions so that, by Allah's mercy, the doors to Paradise will be open
for us by our key of la ilaha illa-llah.