Reference: Majmoo‘ Fataawa (Verdicts) of Shaykh Ibn Baaz (15/51)
Question: What is your advice for the Muslims, while we prepare for this virtuous month?
Response: My advice to all the Muslims is that they fear Allaah, the Majestic, the Most High. And that they receive their great month with sincere repentance from all sins. They should learn about their religion, learn the rulings concerning fasting and the night prayer. This is due to the saying of the Prophet (peace be upon him), “Whoever Allaah wants good for, he will give him understanding of the religion.” (Bukhari)
And the saying of the Prophet (peace be upon him), “When Ramadhan comes, the gates of Paradise are opened and the gates of Hell are closed, and the devils are chained.” (Bukhari)
And, “On the first night of Ramadhan, the doors of Paradise are opened, and the doors of Hell are closed, and the devils are chained, and a caller calls out, “Oh seeker of good come near, and oh seeker of evil go away, and Allaah has slaves that He frees from the Hell-Fire, and this is in every night.” (Tirmidhi, Ibn Maaja)
And he (peace be upon him) used to say to the companions, “The month of Ramadhan has come, which is the month of blessings, Allaah covers you in blessings this month, so He sends down mercy. The evil deeds are wiped out and the supplications are answered, so show to Allaah good from yourselves, for indeed the evil one is the one who is deprived of the mercy of Allaah in this month.” (Tabaraani)
The meaning of: “Show to Allaah good from yourselves” is hasten to do good, hurry and perform good deeds and stay away from evil sins. And the Prophet (peace be upon him) says, “Whoever fasts Ramadhan with faith while seeking reward (from Allaah), his previous sins are forgiven; whoever prays in Ramadhan with faith while seeking reward (from Allaah) his previous sins are forgiven; and whoever prays during the night of Decree (Laylatul Qadr) with faith while seeking reward (from Allaah), his previous sins are forgiven.” (Bukhari, Muslim)
And the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Allaah said, “Every good deed of the son of Adam will be for him. A good deed will be multiplied ten times, up to as many as seven hundred times, ‘except for fasting, which is for Me and I shall reward it. He gives up his desire, his food and his drink for My sake.’ The fasting person has two occasions of joy, one when he breaks his fast and another when he meets his Lord. The smell that comes from the mouth of a fasting person is better before Allaah than the fragrance of musk.” (Bukhari and Muslim)
He (peace be upon him) also says, “If one of you is fasting on a day, then he should neither indulge in obscene language nor should he raise the voice, and if someone curses them or fights them, let them say, “I am fasting.” (Bukhari)
And he (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever does not refrain from false speech and acting on it and ignorance, then Allaah has no need of his refraining from his food and drink.” (Bukhari)
So my advice to all the Muslims is that they fear Allaah, preserve and protect their fasting from all sins. It is prescribed for them to struggle to do good, to hasten to do righteous deeds including charity and reading much Qur’’aan, making tasbeeh , i.e., saying “Subhaana-llaah” (Glory be to Allaah), making tahleel (saying ‘La Ilaaha Illa-llaah (None deserves be worshipped except Allaah), making tahmeed, i.e., saying al-Hamdulil-llaah (All praise is due to Allaah), making takbeer, i.e., saying Allaahu Akbar, (Allaah is the Greatest), and seeking forgiveness, because this is the month of Qur’’aan.
“The month of Ramadhan, the month in which the Qur’’aan was revealed.” [2:185]
So, it is legislated for a Muslim to strive to read the Qur’’aan. It is recommended for the men and women to increase in reading the Qur’’aan night and day. Each letter is a good deed, and each good deed is multiplied by ten as the Prophet (peace be upon him) said. One must also be careful from performing any sins or acts of disobedience. And recommending one another to the truth (i.e., ordering one another to perform all kinds of good deeds), and enjoining good and forbidding evil.
It is a great month where the good deeds are multiplied, and the evil sin is magnified. So it is on every Muslim to struggle to do what Allaah has made an obligation upon him, and to beware of what Allaah has made forbidden on him, and to be even more cautious and careful in Ramadhan. It is also prescribed for a Muslim to struggle hard to do good, including charity, visiting the sick, following the funeral procession, keeping the ties of kinship, and to increase in reading (the Qur’aan), to increase in the remembrance of Allaah, making tasbeeh , i.e., saying “Subhaana-llaah” (Glory be to Allaah), making tahleel (saying “La Ilaaha Illa-llaah”, ‘Nothing deserves be worshipped except Allaah’) seeking his forgiveness, supplicating and doing other acts of good, while hoping for the reward of Allaah, and fearing His punishment.
We ask Allaah to make the Muslims successful in doing that which pleases Him. We ask Allaah to allow us and all of the Muslims to pass this month with faith while seeking his reward. We ask Allaah to grant us and all Muslims everywhere understanding of the religion and to make us upright upon it, to make us safe from any acts that might be the cause to receive the anger of Allaah or be the cause to receive His punishment. I ask Allaah to give success to all of the rulers and all of the leaders of the Muslims, to guide them and to rectify their affairs. (We ask him) to guide them to rule by the Shari’ah of Allaah in all of their affairs, in their worship, actions and all of their matters. We ask Allaah to give them the ability to do this and to act upon the verse, “And so judge (you O Muhammad) among them by what Allaah has revealed” [5:49]
And to act upon the verse, “Do they then seek after a judgment of (the days of) ignorance? And who is better in judgement than Allaah for a people who have firm Faith” [5:50], and to act upon the verse, “But no, by your Lord, they can have no Faith, until they make you (O Muhammad) judge in all disputes between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decisions, and accept (them) with full submission.” [4:65]
And to act upon the verse, “O you who believe! Obey Allaah and obey the Messenger (Muhammad), and those of you (Muslims) who are in authority. (And) if you differ in anything amongst yourselves, refer it to Allaah and His Messenger, if you believe in Allaah and in the Last Day. That is best and more suitable for final determination.” [4:59]
And to act upon the verse, “Say: Obey Allaah, and obey the Messenger.” [24:54]
And to act upon the verse, “And whatsoever the Messenger (Muhammad) gives you, take it, and whatsoever he forbids you, abstain (from it).” [59:7]
This is what is an obligation on all the Muslims and their leaders. It is obligatory on the leaders of the Muslims, the scholars of the Muslims, and the common people, to fear Allaah, and to submit to the rulings of Allaah. (It is an obligation upon them) to rule by the rulings of Allaah between themselves, because the legislations of Allaah lead to righteousness, guidance and a good ending; through it is the pleasure of Allaah, the attainment of the truth that Allaah legislated and the protection from oppression. We ask Allaah for all of us success, guidance, and sound intentions and actions. And may Allaah’’s peace and blessings be upon the Prophet Muhammad and on his family and companions.