Salat (prayer) is the most important pillar of Islam after the declaration of faith. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Islam is built on five (pillars): the testimony that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, establishing the Prayer, paying zakat, fasting Ramadan and performing pilgrimage to the sacred House of Allah.” Neglecting it is a major sin; even some scholars said that it is Kufr (disbelief).
So, Prayer is an obligatory act of worship and it should be observed in its due times. When we consider the legislation of prayer along with other obligatory acts, we find that it is a special case. In other words, in case of Zakat, if one does not have the nisab (minimum zakatable amount) and in case of Hajj, if one does not have the financial ability; these acts are not required from them. In case of Salat, if one could not perform it in its due time, he should do it later, if he cannot perform it while standing, he can perform it while sitting, lying on his side or even by his eyes. In other words, there is no excuse for Salat except for lack of mind, God forbid!
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “The one who tells another about something good is like the one who does it.” So, every Muslim is advised to urge those who neglect Salat to return to it and to inform them that the obligation of prayer does not relate in any way to one’s mode or state of mind.
Allah said in the Qur’an, “Prayer at fixed times hath been enjoined on the believers.” (Al-Nisa’, 103) Thus, every Muslim should perform it in its due time and not to delay it. If a person delays offering prayer, he has to make up for the missed prayer, otherwise, it is the punishment of Allah waiting for him.
Moreover, we encourage Muslims to show the effect of prayer in their behavior and manners by being tolerable, decent and avoiding ill-practices. Allah says in the Qur’an, “And establish worship. Lo! worship preserves from lewdness and iniquity” (Al-Nahl, 45). So, If they show a good example of Muslims offering Prayer, that will surely let those who neglect prayer think about the matter.
We pray Allah to guide us to what is right and protect us from the whispers of Satan. Amen!