STEADFASTNESS IN SALAAT
8. Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (R.A) narrates that Rasulullah (pbuh) said: “Will there remain any impurity on a person who baths five times a day in a river flowing in front of his house?”
The people said: “No impurity will remain on him.”
Rasulullah (pbuh) said:This is the effect of the five Salaat. By means of it, Allah Ta’ala purifies the performer of all sins.” (Bukhari, Muslim)
Indeed, a great significance of Salaat is stated in this hadith.
9. Hadhrat Jaabir (R.A) narrates that Rasulullah (pbuh) said:“The distinguishing factor between kufr and Imaan is the deliberate neglect of Salaat.” (Muslim)
Deliberate neglect brings one close to kufr. One who abstains from Salaat flounders on the brink of kufr
10. Hadhrat Abdur Rahmaan Bin Amr Bin Al-A’s (R.A) narrates that Rasulullah (pbuh) said: “Salaat, on the Day of Qiyaamah, will be a light, a proof and a means of salvation for the one who guarded it. He who neglects Salaat, will have no light, no proof and no salvation (from the direction of Salaat). He (the one who neglected Salaat) will be in the company of Qaroon, Fir’oun, Haamaan and ubay Ibn Khalf on the Day of Qiyaamah.” (Ahmad, Daarami, Baihaqi, Shu’bul Imaan)
What greater punishment and disgrace can there be than to be resurrected in the company of such great unbelievers and to be flung into Jahannum along with them?
11. Hadhrat Bareedah (R.A) narrates that Rasulullah (pbuh) said: “The subject of a pledge which exists between the people and us (the Ambiyaa) is Salaat. Thus, whoever, neglects Salaat has become a kaafir (i.e. in terms of practical life, not in terms of Imaan).” (Ahmad, Tirmizi, Nisaai, Ibn Majah)
The evil of neglecting Salaat is amply illustrated by this hadith. Those who deliberately neglect Salaat are likened to the kuffaar. They appear in practical life as kuffaar. Since there is no distinguishing feature between them and the kuffaar, Islamic law will treat them on par with the kuffaar. It is clear from this hadith that neglect of Salaat is a salient feature of kufr. Although a Muslim will not be proclaimed a kaafir if he neglects the performance of Salaat, nevertheless, the Shariah views his crime with the utmost of gravity. Persistence in the neglect of Salaat is punishable by death in Islam.
excerpt from Hayatul Muslimeen