Do not Lie even in Joke!
Do not Lie even in Joke!
by Shawana A Aziz
As-Sunnah Islamic Newsletter
True belief in Allah and the Day of Judgment implies that the person is truthful in his speech If he truly believes that Allah Hears and Sees everything he does and a Day will come when he will be accounted for his actions, then he will not lie. The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: "Let he who truly believes in Allah and the Last Day speak good or be silent." [Saheeh al-Bukharee]
It is from the tricks of Shaytaan that he first makes sins look insignificant and minor in the eyes of the believers, and then gradually deceives them to commit those sins. Lying is one of them, and people do not show much concern about its prohibition, however, lying is a characteristic of hypocrisy, Abdullah Ibn Amr Ibn Amr al-Aas (radhi allahu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: "Whoever has the following four characteristics will be a pure hypocrite; and whoever has one of these four characteristics will have one characteristic of hypocrisy unless and until he gives it up; whenever he is entrusted he betrays, whenever he speaks he tells a lie, whenever he makes a covenant he proves treacherous, and whenever he quarrels he behaves in a very imprudent, evil and insulting manner." [Saheeh al-Bukharee]
Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) warned us against lying by describing the severe punishments of Allah for the liars. He (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) related a dream in which he (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) saw people being punished; among them were two persons, whose cheeks were torn away from the mouth to the ear. He said: "I saw (in a dream), two men came to me. They said, 'The person, the one whose cheek you saw being torn away (from the mouth to the ear) was a liar and used to tell lies and the people would report those lies on his authority till they spread all over the world. So he will be punished like that till the Day of Resurrection.'" [Saheeh al-Bukharee (vol. 8, no: 118)]
The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) explained that lying could cause one to end up in the Hell Fire, he (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: "Avoid falsehood, for falsehood leads to wickedness, and wickedness to Hell; and if a man continues to speak falsehood and makes falsehood his object, he will be recorded in Allah's presence as a great liar. And adhere to the truth, for truth leads to good deeds, and good deeds lead to Paradise. If a man continues to speak the truth and makes truth his object, he will be recorded in Allah's presence as eminently truthful." [Abu Dawood (Sunan Abu Dawood vol. 3, no. 4971)]
Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) has strictly forbade lying at all times, but he (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) specifically cursed the person who lies to make people laugh, he (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: "Woe be on one who speaks and lies in order to make people laugh, woe be on him." [Abu Dawood vol: 3, no. 4972.] This Hadeeth shows the gravity of lying in jokes, which has today become a very common behavior. People appreciate and encourage false jokes claiming that it brings joy and amusement - But in the above Hadeeth, the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) forbade lying even if the intention of the person is to amuse people, because one who habitually lies for sake of amusement, loses the fear of lying and he is very likely to later fall into harmful lies. So, the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) blocked this path from the beginning because of the bad it may lead to.
Islam does not prohibit joking. It is known through many narrations that Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) approved joking, and he (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) would himself play and joke with his companions and small children. Simak ibn Harb asked Jabir ibn Samurah (radhi allahu anhu), "Did you sit in the company of the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam)?" He said: 'Yes, very often. He (the Prophet) used to sit at the place where he observed the morning or dawn prayer till the sun rose or when it had risen; he would stand, and they (his Companions) would talk about matters (pertaining to the days) of ignorance, and they would laugh (on these matters) while (the Prophet) only smiled.' [Saheeh Muslim (1413)] So, joking is permitted in Islam but with some necessary guidelines,
(a) Joking should not involve lying, Abu Hurayrah (radhi allahu anhu) said that the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) was told, "O Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam), you are joking with us." He (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: "I only say what is true." [Tirmidhee] Also, listening to jokes that involve lies is forbidden, because silence in Islam indicates consent. Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) has ordered us to stop evil or at least speak out against it, if it occurs in one's presence. If one cannot gather the courage to speak against the one who lies, then he should leave such people who engage in lies to pass their time.
(b) Joking should not involve bad language or abusing people. Allah says in the Qur'aan: "O you who believe! A group of people should not scorn another group, for it may be that (the scorned person) is better than the other…" [Soorah al-Hujurat (49): 11]
Always Remember Before you speak!
Everything we say is being recorded in our actions and that one wrong word can take us to Hell Fire. Allah says in Soorah Qaf (50): 18: "Not a word he utters but there is a watcher by him ready (to record it)."
The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: "Sometimes, a person says a thing which pleases Allah, and in return Allah raises his status (rewards him), and sometimes a persons says something which displeases Allah, and it takes him to Hell." [Saheeh al-Bukharee]