Belief in Allah can be fulfilled in the following ways:
First: Belief that this universe has only One God, Who alone created it. He is its sole Owner, Controller and Director of all its affairs in terms of sustenance, actions, life, death, benefit and harm. There is no lord besides Him. He alone does whatever He wills and decides whatever He wishes. He gives glory to whomsoever He wills and He disgraces whomsoever He wills. To Him belongs the sovereignty of the heavens and the earths and He is capable of doing all things.
He has knowledge of all things and has no need of anyone. To Him belongs the command and in His Hand is all that is good. He has no partner in His deeds and none has control over His affairs. The whole creation including the Angels, mankind and the jinn are His slaves and none of them dares go out of His command, power and will. His deeds are uncountable and innumerable and all perfect qualities are His sole right without any partner. None deserves these attributes but Him alone and it is not allowed to attribute them or any part thereof to anyone besides Allah the Exalted. Allah says,
O mankind! Worship your Lord (Allah) Who created you and those who were before you so that you may be pious. (It is He) Who has made the earth a resting place for you, and the sky as a canopy, and sent down water (rain) from the sky and brought forth therewith fruits as a provision for you. (Al-Baqarah 2:21-22)
Second: To believe in the Oneness of Allah and in His beautiful Names and perfect Attributes, part of which He taught His slaves in His Book or in the Sunnah of the seal of His Prophets and Messengers, Muhammad (peace be upon him). Allah the Exalted says,
And all the Most Beautiful Names belong to Allah, so call on Him by them, and leave the company of those who belie or deny (or utter impious speech against) His Names. They will be requited for what they used to do. (Al-A`raf 7:180)
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, “Allah has ninety nine Names, whoever believes in them and acts by them shall enter Paradise. Allah is One and He loves odd numbers.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)
This belief however is based on two great foundations:
First: That to Allah belong all beautiful Names and sublime Attributes that indicate perfect qualities that are free from all kinds of defects. None of the creation shares with Allah any of these qualities.
Second: That Allah the Exalted is absolutely free from all attributes of defects and imperfection like sleep, incapability, ignorance, injustice and the like. He is also free from being compared to any of His creatures. This belief therefore, necessitates that one refutes what Allah has refuted of Himself and what His Messenger (peace be upon him) has refuted of Him.
Belief in the Names, Attributes and Works of Allah is the only way to know Him and to worship Him. For Allah prevents the creatures from seeing Him with their eyes in this world and therefore, opened for them instead, the way of knowledge through which they can know their Lord, their Sustainer and their God, so that they can worship him according to this correct and sound knowledge.
While affirming the Beautiful Names of Allah, the following matters should be taken into consideration:
– Belief in the authenticity of all the Beautiful Names that are mentioned in the Qur’an and Sunnah without adding anything to or reducing anything from them. Allah says,
He is Allah , other than whom there is no deity, the Sovereign, the Pure, the Perfection, the Bestower of Faith, the Overseer, the Exalted in Might, the Compeller, the Superior. Exalted is Allah above whatever they associate with Him. (Al-Hashr 59:23)
It is authentically reported in the Sunnah that the Prophet (peace be upon him) heard a man saying, ‘O Allah, I invoke You with the fact that, to You belongs the praise. There is no god worthy of worship but You, the Benefactor, the Originator of the heavens and the earth. O You the Possessor of Majesty and Honor! O the Ever Living! O the Sustainer of all that exists!’ The Messenger of Allah said to his companions, “Do you know that by which he has invoked Allah?” They said, “Allah and His Messenger know best.” He then said, ‘By Him in Whose Hand is my soul! He has invoked Allah by His Greatest Name which if He is invoked by it, He answers and if He is asked by it, He gives.” (Abu Dawud)
– To believe that it is Allah Who names Himself and that none among His creature has authority to give Him names. It is Allah Who praises Himself with these Names and so they are not invented and created.
To believe that the Beautiful Names of Allah indicate meanings that are in utmost perfection in which there is no defect in any way. It is therefore, obligatory to believe in those meanings, as it is obligatory to believe in those Names.
– It is obligatory to respect the meanings of those Names and they should not be altered or denied.
– To believe in the rules, deeds and impacts that each of these Names entails.
Third: Believing that Allah is the only True God that deserves to be sought in all acts of worship, both apparent and hidden ones. He is One and He hasno partner. Allah says,
And verily, We have sent among every nation a Messenger (proclaiming): ‘Worship Allah alone and keep away from all false deities.” (An-Nahl 16:36)
In the Sahihs of Al-Bukhari and Muslim, the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) told Mu`adh ibn Jabal: “Do you know the right of Allah upon His slaves and the right of the slaves upon Allah?” Mu`adh said, ‘I said: Allah and His Messenger know best.’ The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) then said, “The right of Allah upon the slaves is that they should worship Him and not associate anything with Him in worship; and the right of the slaves upon Allah is that He would not punish the one who does not associate anything with Him in worship.”
The True God is the One Whom all hearts worship and for Whom they are full of love, to the exclusion of any other thing. He is the One Whom all hearts are full of hope for to the exclusion of all other things and whom all hearts are contented with supplication to Him, seeking His Help and fearing Him to the total exclusion of others.
Source: Taken from a book entitled “Pillars of Iman” by Islamic University, Madinah, Deanship of Scientific Research, Translation Department.