The Prophet’s Last Sermon: An Amazing Teaching Tool for Parents |

The Prophet’s Last Sermon: An Amazing Teaching Tool for Parents

There are a number of resources that provide an array of Islamic guidance and details about how to implement that guidance into our daily lives. The treasured words of Allah housed in the Quran Al-Kareem, the Glorious Quran, and the painstakingly detailed record of the Prophet Muhammad’s, peace and blessings be upon him, Sunnah, his speech, actions, and naseeha or sound advice, are stellar examples. But there is another which holds a special place near that top of any noble list, and that is the Prophet’s Last Sermon.

The Last Sermon, also known as Khutba Hajjatul Wida in Arabic, was delivered on the Day of Arafat, the 9th Day of Dhul Hijjah, 10 AH (March 6, 632 AD). It was delivered on Mount Arafat in front of a large gathering of Muslims performing Hajj. It foreshadowed the Prophet’s, peace and blessings be upon him, death and provided a comprehensive guide to the foundations of our faith. As such, it is a wonderful teaching tool for parents to use to harken back to our rich Islamic history, connect hearts to our beloved Prophet, and also to touch on the essence of the guidance that we can rely on to be successful in this life and in the Hereafter.

Make It a Family Learning Experience

The Last Sermon is written in simple language, making for an excellent opportunity to read from the document itself. The exercise is sure to bring goosebumps to those who can fathom the historic significance of the words and its delivery. Here are some simple steps that you can implement this year and to make it an annual family tradition.

1. Locate a copy of the full sermon.

In the digital age you can easily find the entire sermon in the various formats including slide presentations, twitter documents, pdf downloads, and more. Be sure it is the comprehensive document from start to finish. Here is one resource published some time ago by Sound Vision.

There are also posters worthy of framing that can be purchased from Etsy or other online retailers that can be displayed during Eid and/or throughout the year.

2. Collect some historic information.

A history lesson requires facts and It would be important to have some details on hand about the time, place, and circumstances surrounding the khutbah. Here are a few:

  • The khutbah was delivered in the Uranah Valley of Mount Arafat or Jabal Al-Rahmah in Makkah. This area is where those who are performing Hajj, also known as hajjis, gather on the 9th of Dhul Hijjah, commonly referred to as the Day of Arafat. 
  • On this last day of the Hajj, pilgrims make their way from Mina to Mount Arafat for a day of supplication and Quran reading. It is widely considered the best day of the Muslim calendar year. 
  • Muslims worldwide fast on the Day of Arafat and believe that, if it is accepted, it is an expiation of sins of the previous year and the upcoming year.
  • Muslims are encouraged to remember and worship Allah on this day with the recitation of the Tahleel (Laa ilaaha illAllah), Takbeer (Allahu Akbar), Tahmeed (Alhamdulillah), and Tasbeeh (SubhanAllah). It would also be important to continue the practice into the days of Tashreeq (11,12, and 13th of Dhul Hijjah.

3. Give proper reverence to the Prophet Muhammad.

As parents, we have to use every possible teachable moment to connect ourselves and our children to the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him. He was the last in a long line of prophets sent with the guidance of tawheed, the Oneness of Allah, and is known as the seal of the prophets. The Quran, the final and most comprehensive book of guidance, was also delivered to him and preserved for the whole of mankind. He was sent as a mercy and the greatest example of a human being throughout time. His legacy, mannerisms, and advices are painstakingly preserved in the Sunnah and have offered guidance about the daily practice of Islam for more than 1400 years.

4. Gather the entire family for a reading of the Last Sermon.

Make the effort to read the entire sermon as a family. These words are profound but hearing them in the voices of our own family members is very moving and can have a lasting impact. It is a relatively easy read and each member of the family who can read, even at an elementary level, can and should take turns doing so.

5. Upon completion, allow some time for reflection.

Parents can take the lead in asking if anyone has questions about the reading or if there were parts that were most notable for each family member. Here are a few sample conversation starters:

  • How did the Prophet gain his audience’s undivided attention?
  • Is there anything new you learned from the reading?
  • What did he ask all of us to do in the sermon?

Each and every word is significant, however, there are some general themes that can be the focus of increased attention, particularly for older children.

  • There is a significance to these words for all of mankind.

The sermon begins with, 


“O People. Listen well to my words, for I do not know; perhaps I may never meet you after this year in this place again. Therefore, listen to what I am saying to you very carefully and take these words to those who could not be present here today.”

The Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessing be upon him, addressed the sermon to the whole of mankind and reiterated the significance of it for those present and for posterity. That is because the lessons in it are the foundational principles of our faith. By the choice of these words, there is an open invitation to all people, not just the Muslim believers, to practice the universal principles of Islam.

  • There is a call to uphold the sanctity of life and property of a Muslim.

The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, reminded us that the life and property of every Muslim is a sacred trust. He cautioned listeners to treat one another and the property of others with care and return the goods entrusted to you to their rightful owners. He reminded us that Allah will hold us to account on the Day of Judgment for these actions. It was along these same lines that he mentioned that usury or interest is forbidden and waived all interest obligations henceforth.

  • There is a warning to beware of Shaytan.

It is significant that there is mention of the dangers of Shaytan’s whispers. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, warned that Shaytan has “lost hope that he will ever be able to lead you astray in big things, so beware of following him in small things.” This would be a reference to the way that small sins can lead to bigger sins and how we can even develop a tolerance for wrongdoing when there is a repetition of sins or we are surrounded by them.

  • There is a call to honor and respect the rights of women.

Islam uplifted the status of women under the leadership of the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him. And it is significant the Last Sermon mentions the rights of women under the sacred covenant of marriage. Husbands are implored to “treat your women well and be kind to them” and there are instructions to wives about their responsibilities as well.

  • There is a reminder about the importance of the five pillars of Islam.

The khutbah reiterated the importance of the five pillars of Islam - worship Allah by living the shahadah, performing the five daily salat or prayers, fasting during the month of Ramadan, giving wealth in the form of zakat, and performing hajj if you can afford it.

  • There is a call to universal equality.

The call to universal equality is in the reminder that all of mankind is from Adam and Hawaa, “an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over a black, nor a black has any superiority over a white - except by piety and good action.” We are reminded that we are all brothers and sisters in Islam and we need to heed these lessons and be the leaders in combatting racisim, discrimination, bigotry, hatred, and social injustice in every corner of the globe.

  • There is a call to uphold the teachings of Islam.

The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, reminded that we “will appear before Allah to answer for our deeds.” And he also emphasized that we need to rely on the guidance of the Quran and Sunnah. And that this guidance is to be passed on to others throughout time, so much so that “the last ones understand my words better than those who listened to me directly.”

And in conclusion, the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, confirmed that he had fulfilled Allah’s mission to convey these messages to the people. Those were his companions, who had the benefit of learning from his advice and his presence, and that is the whole of mankind, all of us, who can hear and gain access to the message.

Upon finishing the khutbah, the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessing be upon him, received the final revelation of Quran with this verse from Surah Al-Ma’idah,

“This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed my favor upon you and have approved of you Islam as a religion.”

(Surah Al-Ma’idah, 5:3)

Alhamdulillah, all praise and thanks belong to Allah.

Since the time of the Last Sermon, Islam has grown to a universal religion that is practiced by nearly 2 billion people throughout the world. Imagine if all of these Muslims, all of us,  lived by the guidance found in it. Our families, our homes, our nations, our world would be different than they are today. Now that you have been reminded about these lessons, the remaining question is - how can you and your family utilize them to live a better life in this world and to gain rewards for your intentions and efforts in the Hereafter?

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