PA Minister of Religious Endowments Mahmoud Al-Habbash recently delivered a sermon in which he talked about the notions of resistance and Jihad, stating that while "wisdom and reason" should be exercised in adapting the means of resistance to the circumstances, capabilities, and needs of the Palestinian people, "nobody has the right to declare the end of Jihad."
Following are excerpts from the sermon, which aired on Palestinian Authority TV on January 7, 2010.
To view this clip on MEMRI TV, visit http://www.memri.org/legacy/clip/0/0/0/0/0/0/2358 .
"Jihad Means Exerting Mental, Physical, Financial, or Verbal Efforts to Elevate the Word of Allah"
Mahmoud Al-Habbash: "I will talk about one notion – the notion of resistance. Today, we are standing on the land of a village in Palestine, which may only be a small village, but is a village of resistance – resistance in the true sense of the word, which we want to understand...
"What is Jihad, and what is resistance? When people talk about Jihad, what do they mean? What is the meaning of Jihad in Islam? And what is the meaning of resistance in Islam? We must understand this. [...]
"The literal meaning of 'Jihad' is the exertion of efforts – exerting your efforts and investing your energy. Jihad for the sake of Allah means exerting your efforts in order to elevate the word of Allah – whether these efforts are mental, physical, financial, or verbal.
"In this, the words of the Prophet Muhammad are true: 'Wage Jihad against infidels or the polytheists with your money, your souls, and your tongues.' Wage Jihad against the polytheists with money. When you use your money for the sake of Allah, in defense of the religion of Allah, of the Muslims, of their countries, and of all that is sacred to them – you are a mujahid for the sake of Allah.
"When you sacrifice your soul and invest your energy in defense of the religion of Allah, the Muslims, their countries, their mosques, their holy places, and their honor – you are a mujahid for the sake of Allah." [...]
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"In Our Resistance to the Enemy, We Must Choose the Means and Methods that Will Grant Us Victory, Benefit Us, and Minimize Our Losses"
"Some people believe that Jihad means nothing but bearing arms and fighting the enemy. This is indeed Jihad, but it is not the only Jihad. There is the Jihad of the word, the Jihad of money, the Jihad of resistance, and the Jihad of defense. This is what we need to understand about the meaning of 'resistance.'
"Resistance does not mean that we should bear arms, whether the time is right or not. It is wise to bear arms at a time when we should bear arms, and to lay down our weapons when we should lay down our weapons.
"We must choose... In our resistance to our enemy – to the Israeli settlement in our land, for example, and to the Israeli aggression against us – we must choose the means and the methods that will grant us victory, be to our benefit, and minimize our losses.
"Brothers, we must understand that resistance assumes many forms, and that Jihad assumes many and varied forms. We have no right to reduce this notion into a single form, or into several forms, without the others. All forms of resistance are honorable and necessary.
"However, we must exercise wisdom and reason when we use the appropriate means, which are suited to our circumstances, our capabilities, and our needs, when it comes to resistance and Jihad.
"Jihad continues to Judgment Day. Brothers, nobody – whoever he may be – can ever abolish Jihad or say that it has come to an end. Jihad continues to Judgment Day. Someone once said in a political debate: 'I am ready to declare an end to Jihad.' This concept is wrong. Nobody has the right to declare an end to Jihad.
"However, Jihad assumes different forms, paths, and methods, in accordance with the circumstances, in accordance with the capabilities and needs of the nation, in accordance with the needs of the people, and in accordance with the reality of the Palestinian people today.
"Brothers, it is all resistance. We are all conducting resistance, but logic and reason require that we give priority to certain methods at certain times, while postponing other methods. Reason, national interests, and Islamic interests make this necessary for us.
"There is not a single one of us who does not participate in the resistance. We all participate in resistance. Even a woman who sits at home, raising her children, is conducting resistance, because she is preparing the ammunition of the future, and the builders of the future – the future of this people and this country.
"We have one enemy. All our arrows and all our efforts should be aimed in a single direction – to conduct resistance against the settlement and the occupation, and to repel the Israeli injustice done to our people."
"The Day Will Come When We Will Fly the Flag of Our Independent Palestinian State over Every Inch of Our Soil"
"Those who instigate problems and disputes here or there – disputes with Egypt, Jordan, or any other Arab country... This is not in the best interests of our Palestinian cause. Brothers, the only one who benefits from this nonsense is Israel and the Israeli occupation. Nobody benefits from the instigation of problems with Egypt except for Israel and the Israeli occupation.
"Therefore, any hand that is raised against any Palestinian, against any Arab, against Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, or any other Arab country, must be chopped off, because it violates the law, the national consensus, and the values of our religion, which says: 'Fight all the polytheists as they fight you all.'
"It is inevitable that the day will come when we will fly the flag of our independent Palestinian state over every inch of our soil and over the minarets and the domes of Jerusalem, Allah willing."