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Recently we are shocked once again with the rudeness of the Israelis who disregard the honor of Ramadhan by attacking the Palestinian civilians who were doing worship in the al-Aqsa Mosque. More than 163 people were injured by the action taken by the Zionist regime. [1] They used rubber bullets and gas bombs to mess with the Muslims who were praying Tarawih prayer.

The action is considered a crime of war following the protest of the Palestinian civilians towards the ban forced by the Zionist regime upon some parts of the old cities in Bait al-Maqdis from being entered during the month of Ramadhan. The action portrays Israelis oppressive behavior and their rudeness upon the third most sacred place for the Muslims. Invasion done not only causes anger from the Palestinians, but even Muslims across the world strongly condemn actions taken by them.

The attack by the Israelis Zionist regime on the past 8th May is not something new. It is the continuation of a series of claims and assertions made by the Zionist Israelis who said that the al-Aqsa Mosque territory is the original location of the Temple Mount for Jewish people. This starts with series of arm forces for Israelis invasion of Baitul Maqdis during the Arab-Israel war on the year 1967 and for the whole city in 1980. Due to that, several attempts are done by the regime to deny the right of the Muslims to the al-Aqsa Mosque.

At the same time, eviction of Palestinian civilians in the territory of Syeikh al-Jarrah, where the original citizens who lived there for years were evicted from their own home by a court decision which is unjust to allow the Jews to build prohibited dwellings at the territory.

Al-Masjid Al-Aqsa According to the Islamic Perspective

Al-Masjid al-Aqsa is the qibla direction of the Prophets and the first qibla for the Muslims. It is also one of the masjids which are highly encouraged by the Prophet PBUH for one to visit and to perform the prayer. Abu Sa’id al-Khudri said that the Prophet PBUH said:

لَا تُشَدُّ الرِّحَالُ إِلَّا إِلَى ثَلَاثَةِ مَسَاجِدَ: مَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ وَالْمَسْجِدِ الْأَقْصَى وَمَسْجِدِي هَذَا

“Animals are saddled only for prayer in the three mosques: the sacred mosque, the Aqsa mosque, and this mosque of mine.” (These are the only mosques to which long journeys may be made purely for the purpose of praying in them. The sacred mosque means the Ka'ba.) [2]

Sahih Al-Bukhari (1195)

Imam Badruddin al-‘Aini has explained on the meaning behind this hadith. He said:

فِيهِ فَضِيلَة هَذِه الْمَسَاجِد ومزيتها على غَيرهَا لكَونهَا مَسَاجِد الْأَنْبِيَاء عَلَيْهِم الصَّلَاة وَالسَّلَام لِأَن الْمَسْجِد الْحَرَام قبْلَة النَّاس وَإِلَيْهِ حجهم وَمَسْجِد الرَّسُول أسس على التَّقْوَى وَالْمَسْجِد الْأَقْصَى كَانَ قبْلَة الْأُمَم السالفة

“In the hadith, it explains the virtues of these three masjids and their specialties which other masjids do not possess. They are the masjid of the Prophets PBUH. This is because al-Masjid al-Haram is the qibla for mankind. Many people circle around the Masjid al-Haram. While Masjid al-Nabawi was built on the basis of faith and taqwa, and al-Masjid al-Aqsa was the qibla of the past nations”. [3]

The virtue of al-Masjid al-Aqsa is clearly seen in the story of Isra’ and Mi’raj. It is the final destination for Prophet Muhammad PBUH before he was brought to the heavens to meet Allah SWT. Allah SWT says:

سُبْحَانَ الَّذِي أَسْرَىٰ بِعَبْدِهِ لَيْلًا مِّنَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ إِلَى الْمَسْجِدِ الْأَقْصَى الَّذِي بَارَكْنَا حَوْلَهُ لِنُرِيَهُ مِنْ آيَاتِنَا ۚ إِنَّهُ هُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْبَصِيرُ

Exalted is He who took His Servant by night from al-Masjid al-Haram to al-Masjid al-Aqsa, whose surroundings We have blessed, to show him of Our signs. Indeed, He is the Hearing, the Seeing.

Surah al-Isra’ (1)

Some mufassirun stated that al-Masjid al-Aqsa is the second building built by Prophet Abraham AS after the Ka’aba. This is explained by Sheikh Tahir bin ‘Ashur in his tafsir: [4]

This is also based on the hadith narrated by Abu Zar RA. He once asked the Prophet PBUH:

يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ، أَىُّ مَسْجِدٍ وُضِعَ فِي الأَرْضِ أَوَّلُ قَالَ ‏"‏ الْمَسْجِدُ الْحَرَامُ ‏"‏‏.‏ قَالَ قُلْتُ ثُمَّ أَىٌّ قَالَ ‏"‏ الْمَسْجِدُ الأَقْصَى ‏"‏‏.‏ قُلْتُ كَمْ كَانَ بَيْنَهُمَا قَالَ ‏"‏ أَرْبَعُونَ سَنَةً، ثُمَّ أَيْنَمَا أَدْرَكَتْكَ الصَّلاَةُ بَعْدُ فَصَلِّهْ، فَإِنَّ الْفَضْلَ فِيهِ ‏"

"O Allah's Messenger (ﷺ)! Which mosque was first built on the surface of the earth?" He said, "Al- Masjid-ul-, Haram (in Mecca)." I said, "Which was built next?" He replied "The mosque of Al-Aqsa (in Jerusalem)." I said, "What was the period of construction between the two?" He said, "Forty years." He added, "Wherever (you may be, and) the prayer time becomes due, perform the prayer there, for the best thing is to do so (i.e. to offer the prayers in time). [5]

Sahih Al-Bukhari (3366)

Besides, al-Masjid al-Aqsa is closely related to the history of the past prophets sent by Allah SWT. It is considered a Holy place for Muslims. Therefore, al-Quran mentions Palestine as the Holy land (al-ardh al-muqaddasah). Allah SWT says:

يَا قَوْمِ ادْخُلُوا الْأَرْضَ الْمُقَدَّسَةَ الَّتِي كَتَبَ اللَّهُ لَكُمْ وَلَا تَرْتَدُّوا عَلَىٰ أَدْبَارِكُمْ فَتَنقَلِبُوا خَاسِرِينَ

O my people, enter the Holy Land which Allah has assigned to you and do not turn back [from fighting in Allah's cause] and [thus] become losers."

Surah al-Maidah (21)

The Holy land includes al-Masjid al-Aqsa. It is explained and described by Imam al-Tabari in his tafsir. [6]

Hence, al-Masjid al-Aqsa has its own position and specialty in the eyes of the Muslim. It is not only related to one’s faith but even considered as the Holy territory of the Muslims. Basically, all efforts to tarnish the honor of al-Masjid al-Aqsa able to hurt and causes the anger of the Muslims.

The Need for Muslims to Have Conscientious Towards the Issue of Palestine and al-Masjid al-Aqsa

The issue of Palestine and al-Masjid al-Aqsa is not the issue of Palestinian people only. Even, it is not an individual’s issue. It is an issue of the Muslims as a whole. It is not to be taken lightly. Since it is the third Holy place for Muslims, it should be given specific attention. The negligence of Muslims towards the issue happening in Palestine will cause the enemy to easily capture it. It is wajib for us to condemn people who try to dishonor its sanctity and take actions upon them.

For Muslims, the history of Palestine and al-Masjid al-Aqsa shall always be mentioned. Our nations shall always be reminded of the history of this Holy place. If it is not done, the issue of Palestine will be seen as nothing by the Muslims one day in the future. Malaysian government shall play its role for this issue to be evergreen in the eyes of the Muslims.

May Allah save Palestine and al-Masjid al-Aqsa from the grip of Israeli Zionists. We pray to Allah to save and protect our brothers and sisters there. May Palestine be free from oppression and tyranny one day. O al-Aqsa, we are always with you!!

End Notes:

[1] Malaysia kutuk serangan di Al-Masjid Al-Aqsa, Berita Harian dated 8th May 2021. Refer link:

[2] Riwayat Al-Bukhari, no 1195, Sahih Al-Bukhari (2001), Dar Al-Tuq Al-Najah, Beirut, c.2 pg.61.

[3] Badruddin Al-‘Aini, Mahmud Bin Ahmad, Umdah Al-Qari Syarh Sahih Al-Bukhari (t.t), Dar Ihya’ Turath Al-‘Arabi, Beirut, c.7 pg.253.

[4] Ibn ‘Asyur, Muhammad Tahir Bin Muhammad, Tahrir Al-Ma’na Al-Sadid wa Tanwir ‘Uqul Al-Jadid min Tafsir Al-Kitab Al-Majid (1983), Al-Dar Al-Tunisiyah li Al-Nasyr, Tunisia, c.15 pg.16

[5] Riwayat Al-Bukhari, no 3366, Sahih Al-Bukhari (2001), Dar Al-Tuq Al-Najah, Beirut, c.4 pg.145.

[6] Abu Jaafar Al-Tabari, Muhammad Bin Jarir, Jami’ Al-Bayan Fi Ta’wil Ayy Al-Quran(t.t), Dar Al-Tarbiyah wa Al-Turath, Mekah, c.10 pg.167.

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