Harun Yahya - Some Secrets of the Quran
Some Secrets of the Qur'an

Obedience to the Messenger is Obedience to God

One of the most important acts of worship that God commands believers in the Qur'an is obedience to His messengers. God says He has sent messengers to be obeyed, and believers, in every age, have been tested in their obedience to the messengers. Messengers are the people who convey God's message and His commands to people, and warn them of the day of reckoning and of His signs. They are the sincere and blessed people who are chosen by God over the rest of the people and whose acts, attitudes and perfect morals are exemplary. They are the friends of God who are drawn near to Him. As stated in the verse below, obedience to messengers is the indication of one's obedience to God.

Whoever obeys the Messenger has obeyed God. If anyone turns away, we did not send you to them as their keeper. (Surat an-Nisa': 80)

God's Messenger, peace be upon him, also said that the glad tidings are to those who witness to this fact:

You witness that there is no deity but God and that I am His Messenger, don't you? If so, the glad tidings are yours. The Qur'an is such a rope that one of its end reaches to God and the other end reaches to you. Hold fast to it. If you do so, you will never fall into error or danger.8

Disobedience to a messenger is direct disobedience to God and His religion. This is one of the important secrets that God reveals in the Qur'an. In a verse, God relates the state of those who obey the messenger and those who don't:

These are God's limits. As for those who obey God and His Messenger, We will admit them into Gardens with rivers flowing under them, remaining in them timelessly, forever. That is the Great Victory. As for those who disobey God and His Messenger and overstep His limits, We will admit them into a Fire, remaining in it timelessly, forever. They will have a humiliating punishment. (Surat an-Nisa': 13-14)

God has revealed many details in the Qur'an about obedience to the messenger and made clear how the true obedience and submission should be as well as the kind of obedience acceptable in His sight. As also seen in these verses, the fulfilment of all requirements of the religion and rendering too much services for its cause is not adequate. If a person fails to adopt the attitude and morality pertaining to the obedience to the messenger in the sense God describes in the Qur'an and displays imperfections in his obedience, it may well be that God may render all his actions void. Some of the relevant verses are examined below under different sections:


God reveals a very important secret in Surat an- Nisa':

No, by your Lord, they are not believers until they make you their judge in the disputes that break out between them, and then find no resistance within themselves to what you decide and submit themselves completely. (Surat an-Nisa': 65)

In this verse, a very important secret about the ideal obedience to the prophet is revealed. Most people know the concept of obedience. However, obedience to the messenger is much different from all other forms of obedience people know. As God states in the verse above, believers should obey the messenger wholeheartedly, without harbouring the slightest doubt or showing any hesitation. If one feels any doubt about what the messenger says and considers his own ideas more accurate than the messenger's, then this, as the verse suggests, essentially means he is not a true believer.

Believers with true faith and submission know that what the messenger says is the best for them. Even if his words are in conflict with their personal interests, they accept and obey him eagerly and with enthusiasm. This virtuous conduct is a sign of true faith, and God gives the glad tidings of salvation to those who obey the messenger with such submissiveness. Some of the verses in which God gives this good news are as follows:

Whoever obeys God and the Messenger will be with those whom God has blessed: the Prophets and the truthful, the witnesses (who testify) and the righteous (who do good). What excellent company such people are! (Surat an-Nisa': 69)

All who obey God and His Messenger and have awe of God and fear Him, they are the ones who are victorious. (Surat an-Nur: 52)

Say: 'Obey God and obey the Messenger. If you should turn away, he is only responsible for what he is charged with and you are responsible for what you are charged with. If you obey him, you will be guided.' The Messenger is only responsible for clear transmission. (Surat an-Nur: 54)

As stated above, those who obey the messenger will be rightly guided. Throughout history, all people have been tested in their obedience to the messengers. God has always chosen His messengers among people. In this context, some narrow-minded and unwise people have not grasped how to obey a man from among themselves or a man who is not wealthier than themselves. However, God has chosen His messengers, provided support to them from His sight and has given them knowledge and strength. The essence of the matter these people fail to fully understand is that, God chooses whomever He wills. A sincere believer wholeheartedly obeys and respects whom God has chosen, and becomes heartily devoted. He knows that, each time he obeys the messenger, he in fact obeys God. Those who are submissive to God and religion are completely submissive to His messenger too. God relates the situation of those who submit themselves to Him as follows:

Not so! All who submit themselves completely to God and are good-doers will find their reward with their Lord. They will feel no fear and will know no sorrow. (Surat al-Baqara: 112)


In a verse, God states the following:

You who believe! Do not raise your voices above the voice of the Prophet and do not be loud when speaking to him as you are when speaking to one another, lest your actions should come to nothing without your realising it. Those who lower their voices when they are with the Messenger of God are people whose hearts God has tested for fear for God. They will have forgiveness and an immense reward. (Surat al-Hujurat: 2-3)

God's messenger always invites believers to the right path, and to the most beautiful. There are surely times these calls of messengers conflict with the interests of the people around them. However, those who believe and obey the messenger do not pursue their opinion, but rather yield to the words of God, His messenger and the Qur'an. On the other hand, those with poor faith or those who cannot hold their desires under control may show disobedience or weakness upon the call of the messenger. As stated in the verse, their voices, speeches and words they utter may reveal the sickness in their hearts and their weakness in obedience. They may be so unwise to oppose what the prophet says and to raise their voices above his. God informs that deeds of these people will be rendered void. God has informed that all efforts of such a person, even if he works day and night in order to spread the values of religion, will come to nothing on account of his disobedience.

This is a very important secret revealed in many verses in the Qur'an. God has commanded people to perform good deeds, to serve eagerly and firmly for the benefit of Islam, to act in compliance with the good morals described in the Qur'an, to be generous, steadfast, tolerant, truthful and faithful. No doubt, all these are important forms of worship that will be of help to him in the hereafter. However, as seen in Surat al-Hujurat, a single act of disrespectful behaviour towards God's messenger may render all that person's deeds in vain. This, undoubtedly, reminds us once again how important it is to obey and respect God's messengers.


The incident of Saul (Talut) and his army related in the Qur'an is another reminder, which lays heavy stress on the importance of obedience to God's messenger. As related in the Qur'an, when Saul, God's messenger, set out with his forces towards the enemy, he warned his men against drinking from the river they would come across. The relevant verse is as follows:

When Saul marched out with the army, he said, 'God will test you with a river. Anyone who drinks from it is not with me. But anyone who does not taste it is with me - except for him who merely scoops up a little in his hand.' But they drank from it - except for a few of them. Then when he and those who had faith with him had crossed it, they said, 'We do not have the strength to face Goliath and his troops today.' But those who were sure that they were going to meet God said, 'How many a small force has triumphed over a much greater one by God's permission! God is with the steadfast. (Surat al-Baqara: 249)

As seen in the verse, those who did not obey Saul's order grew weak, whereas those who obeyed Saul were given strength by God and, by the Will of God, vanquished the enemy although they were quite in the minority. These are the secrets that God reveals to mankind in the Qur'an. Strength, victory and superiority do not rest on material wealth, prestigious status, being in the majority or possessing physical superiority. Whoever observes God's limits, obeys Him and His messenger, God makes them stronger than all others, and rewards them with innumerable gifts such as wisdom, health, beauty, blessings and wealth. For those ready to stand up with God's messengers there is beautiful eternal life prepared for them in the hereafter.

8- Ramuz El-Hadis, vol. 1, p. 7