“Say (O Muhammad ﷺ to mankind): If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive you your sins. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Ali-Imran 3:31]
“If you love Allah, then follow me (Rasulallah ﷺ)”. Scholars of tafseer call this Ayah “The testing Ayah”. Here is the test: We claim we love Allah s.w.t., but do we still do certain “religious” activities or events just because our ancestors / community do so, even though these actions are never within the sunnah of Rasulallah ﷺ?
If we keep saying: “The ustadh/sheikh says we can / what will people say?”, we need to ask ourselves: whose love are we actually seeking? If we are seeking the love of Allah, then it’s not our culture or the opinion of others that we should follow. Evidence that we are truthful about our claim that we love Allah is when we truly follow the sunnah of Rasulallah ﷺ and that includes abandoning all bid’ah matters.
For these blessed people who follow the Sunnah, it is also a sign that Allah loves them, for the Ayah says: “If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you…”
Allah s.w.t. loves them and guides them to submit to the ways of Rasulallah ﷺ.
It is super easy to claim that we love Allah s.w.t. But what really matters is if Allah loves us. That’s the crux of the matter.
Reference: Extracted from Imam Karim AbuZaid’s Friday khutbah.