Introduction:

‘Abdullaah ibn Mas’ud (Radia-Allaahu ‘anhu) narrated that the Prophet (Salla-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “Truth leads to piety and piety leads to Paradise. A man persists in speaking the truth till he is recorded with Allaah as a truthful man. Falsehood leads to Fujur (wickedness) and wickedness leads to the Fire (Hell), and a person goes on telling lies till he is recorded with Allaah as a great liar.” [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]

As-Sidq is one of the noblest and greatest stations for those who are journeying to Allaah (Ta’ala). All the actions of the heart return to it; whilst lying causes every type of corruption to fall into the heart. In other words, every type of a person’s reformation in his appearance (actions) and his inner self goes back to truthfulness, whilst every type of a person’s corruption in his outward appearance and his inner self goes back to lying.

Allaah (Ta’ala) has made the worldly life an abode of trials in order to distinguish the truthful from the liar and the truth from falsehood. Allaah (Ta’ala) says:

أَحَسِبَ النَّاسُ أَن يُتْرَكُوا أَن يَقُولُوا آمَنَّا وَهُمْ لَا يُفْتَنُونَ

“Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: “We believe,” and will not be tested.”

َوَلَقَدْ فَتَنَّا الذين مِن قَبْلِهِمْ ۖ فَلَيَعْلَمَنَّ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ صَدَقُوا وَلَيَعْلَمَنَّ الْكَاذِبِينَ

“And We indeed tested those who were before them. And Allaah will certainly make (it) known (the truth of) those who are true, and will certainly make (it) known (the falsehood of) those who are liars, (although Allaah knows all that before putting them to test).”

[Surat Al-‘Ankabut 29:2-3]

The trials in this worldly life refer to two matters:

1 – Trials with doubts which blemish knowledge and belief

2 – Trials with (evil) desires which blemish intentions and actions

Whomever Allaah guides at times of the arousal of doubts and saves him from them with what he has of correct belief, well-established faith, truthfulness with Allaah, and a strong connection with Allaah, he will surely succeed in this trial.

Similarly, if lusts and evil desires are aroused and he stays away from them, resorts to Allaah, seeks refuge in Him by obedience to Him and asks salvation from Him, he will also succeed by Allaah’s Help. However, if he is taken in by doubts or lusts, this is one of the signs of his untruthfulness with Allaah or an indication of weak truthfulness with Allaah. In this way people are divided into two parties: A party of truthfulness and a party of dishonesty.

The meaning of Sidq (Truthfulness) in the Arabic Language

Ibn Faaris said in the dictionary ‘Maqaayees Al-Lughah’ that “Sadaqa” indicates strength in a matter, whether it is a statement or something besides it. The opposite of Sidq (truthfulness) is Kadhib (lie) in which there is weakness, and it is false.

When something is said to be Sidq, it means that it is solid.

‘Rumh Sidq’ (truthful spear) means strong spear (i.e. if one throws it, it hits the target).

The dowry of a woman is called “Sadaaq Al-Mar’ah” for its strength and because it is a right due on the husband.

In “Taaj Al-‘Aroos”, As-Sidq means the conformity of the statement with the inner-self (i.e. that which is in the heart) and the matter which has been spoken about.

Also, As-Sidq is agreement and conformity:

1) Conformity of the news with the fact

2) Conformity of the inward with the outward

3) Conformity between the matter and the intention behind it

Shaikh Ibn ‘Uthaimeen (Rahimahullaah) said in ‘Sharh Riyadus-Saliheen’: “Truthfulness is the conformity of the statement with the fact, i.e. if you say something and your statement agrees with the fact, then this is truthfulness. For example, if you say: “Today is Monday” and the day is in fact Monday, then this is a truthful statement. But if you say “Today is Sunday” whilst in fact it is Monday, then this is a lie.

Truthfulness could also be in actions, where the inner self of the person conforms to his outer appearance, such that if he does an action, it is in harmony with what is in his heart.

For example: Al-Muraa’i (the person who shows off his deed) is not truthful because he appears to people that he is one of the worshippers while he is not.

Similarly, the hypocrite is not truthful because he shows Iman (belief) whilst he is not a believer.

Also, the innovator who shows his love for the Prophet (Salla-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) and that he is following the Sunnah of the Prophet (Salla-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) while in fact he is not.” [End quote]

Who are the truthful ones?

Based on the aforementioned definitions of “Sidq”, the truthful person in his speech is the one who strongly observes that his speech conforms exactly with the facts. He is strong when it comes to seeking the conformity of what he says with what he wants and of what he says with the facts. Also, he strongly observes the conformity of his actions to what is in his heart.

Shaikh Ibn ‘Uthaimeen (Rahimahullaah) said in “Sharh Riyadus-Saliheen”: “Allaah (Ta’ala) orders the believers in the Qur’an to be with the truthful ones. He (Ta’ala) says in Surat At-Tawbah [9:119]:

يا أيها الذين آمنوا تَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَكُونُوا مَعَ الصَّادِقِينَ

“O you who believe! Be afraid of Allaah, and be with those who are true (in words and deeds).”

The truthful ones are:

1) Those who are truthful in their utterances, actions, and all their states.

2) Those whose actions are free from laziness and slackening.

3) Those whose utterances and actions are free of ill-intentions. They do not hide the truth from others as adulation (flattery) or hypocrisy.

4) Those whose utterances and actions are based on sincerity and good intentions.

Many people are not truthful in their speech and actions. This is because they are ashamed in front of people and fear them more than they fear Allaah.

One should say the truth and not worry about others. If one trains himself to be truthful, Allaah will help him in the end and all his affairs will be set aright. But if one always lies and hides the truth from people and continues to be like that, his end will be evil.” [End quote]

A lie can also be when one says something that does not conform with what he intends or with what is established in his heart (i.e. uttering something with ill-intentions). Allaah (Ta’ala) says about the hypocrites in Surat Al-Munafiqoon [63:1]:

إِذَا جَاءَكَ الْمُنَافِقُونَ قَالُوا نَشْهَدُ إِنَّكَ لَرَسُولُ اللَّهِ ۗ وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ إِنَّكَ لَرَسُولُهُ وَاللَّهُ يَشْهَدُ إِنَّ الْمُنَافِقِينَ لَكَاذِبُونَ

“When the hypocrites come to you [O Muhammad (Salla-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam)], they say: “We bear witness that you are indeed the Messenger of Allaah.” Allaah knows that you are indeed His Messenger and Allaah bears witness that the hypocrites are liars indeed.”

The hypocrites said something that did not conform with what was established in their hearts of disbelief in the Messenger of Allaah (Salla-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam). In Surat At-Tawbah [9:49] Allaah (Ta’ala) says:

وَمِنْهُم مَّن يَقُولُ ائْذَن لِّي وَلَا تَفْتِنِّي ۚ أَلَا فِي الْفِتْنَةِ سَقَطُوا ۗ وَإِنَّ جَهَنَّمَ لَمُحِيطَةٌ بِالْكَافِرِينَ

“And among them is he who says: ‘Grant me leave (to be exempted from Jihaad) and put me not into trial.’ Surely, they have fallen into trial. And verily, Hell is surrounding the disbelievers.”

Ibn Katheer (Rahimahullaah) said: “Allaah says: “Some hypocrites say to you [O Muhammad (Salla-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam)], ‘permit me to stay behind and put me not into trial if I go with you and see the women of the Romans.’ Allaah, the Exalted, replied: ‘Surely they have fallen into trial’ because of the statement they uttered. The Fitnah they fell into because of not joining the Messenger of Allaah (in Jihaad) and preferring their safety to the safety of the Messenger is worse than the Fitnah they falsely claimed to fear.” [Tafseer Ibn Katheer]

Abu Bakr As-Siddiq (Radia-Allaahu ‘anhu) is called Siddiq because he was strong in his belief. He and all the Sahaabah (Companions) believed, but he excelled them by his strong belief.

Shaikhul-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (Rahimahullaah) said: “As-Sidq means perfect in truthfulness and perfect in belief. The excellence of As-Siddiq (Radia-Allaahu ‘anhu) was not only in seeking truthfulness; rather, it was because he knew what the Prophet (Salla-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) informed of generally and in detail and he believed in that with complete faith (in knowledge, intention, and statement).” [Minhaj as-Sunnah]

 

Sources:

📚  Sharh Riyadh-us-Saliheen by Shaikh Ibn ‘Uthaimeen

📚  Truthfulness with Allaah, by Shaikh Abdur-Razzq Al-Badr

📚  Truthfulness leads to Righteousness, workshop conducted by Shaikha Anaheed As-Simeeri

📚  Tayseer Al-Kareem by Shaikh As-Sa’dee

📚  Tafseer Ibn Katheer.

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