Shaykh Abdurrazzāq al-Badr stated:
Another great story from ‘Umar Ibn al-Khattāb concerning the status of the prayer and attentiveness to pray in congregation is what has been narrated from al-Hākim in his collection of hadīth from Abdullāh Ibn Ja’far.
‘Umar Ibn al-Khattāb went to the home of Sa‘īd Ibn Yarbu’ to visit him when he lost his eyesight. He lost his eyesight so ‘Umar went to his home to visit him. ‘Umar said to him: “Do not abandon Jumu‘ah prayer and do not leave off praying in the Prophet’s Masjid (sallallāhu ‘alaihi wa-sallam). Sa‘īd replied: “I don’t have anyone to take me.”
‘Umar said: “We will find someone to take you.” Thus they found a young slave boy to take him. Look at this concern. During this time Sa‘īd was almost 100 years old.
‘Umar said to him—while he had reached this age and lost his eyesight—“Do not abandon Jumah prayer and do not leave off praying in the Prophet’s Masjid (sallallāhu ‘alaihi wa-sallam).
An elderly man, almost 100 years old and blind, and ‘Umar said to him: “Don’t abandon the Jumu‘ah prayer and don’t leave off praying in the Prophet’s Masjid (sallallāhu ‘alaihi wa-sallam).
If ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) said this to a man who was blind and almost 100 years old, then what is said to the youth O believers?! Those healthy strong youth with eyesight! What is said to them about guarding the prayers! And the negligence towards the prayer has become great. And to Allah alone we complain.
Slaves of Allah, let us fear Allah and take ourselves to account concerning the prayer. Let’s take this command seriously and seek the assistance of Allah the Exalted and stop delaying and procrastinating. How many of the youth delayed and procrastinated and died while procrastinating and therefore met Allah having abandoned the prayer and neglected this obligation! It is upon us to fear Allah and take ourselves to account. The smart person is the one who takes himself to account and strives to do that which will benefit him after death, and the helpless one is the one who follows his desires and engages in wishful thinking, (assuming that Allah will forgive him regardless of what he does and that he does not need to strive to good deeds). Sa‘īd was 120 years old when he died. (al-Hākim)
Translated by Rasheed Ibn Estes Barbee
3rd of Safar, 1438 (11-02-2016)