Good deeds are superior to one another in reward, and likewise, commendable characteristics outweigh one another in virtuousness and degree in accordance with their general usefulness to their possessor and to humankind. Equally, evil deeds and deplorable characteristics increase their owners in punishment and torment according to their harm. Allah says that which means: “And for all there are degrees [of reward and punishment] for what they have done, and [it is] so that He [i.e., Allah] may fully compensate them for their deeds, and they will not be wronged.” (Al-Ahqaaf: 19).
Truthfulness is a noble character that can only be possessed by people with sound hearts. Allah enjoins it in His Book when He says that which means: “O you who have believed! Fear Allah and be with those who are true.” (At-Tawbah: 119).
Truthfulness reveals a persons sound upbringing, pure mind and good nature, while lying exposes a filthy mind and evil conduct. Truth is a saviour of a person while lying is a destroyer. The truth is admired and loved both by one's nature and intellect. The Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam enjoined speaking the truth when he said: "Be truthful for truthfulness leads to righteousness and righteousness leads to Paradise. If a person tells the truth and nothing but the truth, he will be registered with Allah as a truthful person. Beware of lying, for lying leads to sinfulness and sinfulness leads to Hell. If a person tells lies and nothing but lies, he will be registered with Allah as a liar.” (Bukhari & Muslim).
Allah promises a great reward for truthfulness in this world and the next. In this world, Allah provides for those who are truthful a good standing as well as the love of Allah and His creatures; a truthful person's words will be valued, people will feel safe with him and from his evil deeds and he will be fair to himself and others. He will also be saved from the evils and calamities that afflict the liars. He will have peace of mind with no fears or worries. Hasan ibn 'Ali, may Allah be pleased with him and his father, narrated that he heard the Messenger of Allaah sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam saying: “Leave that which is ambiguous to you and take that which you are sure of. Truthfulness is tranquillity while lying is ambiguity.” (At-Tirmithi).
A truthful persons end in this life is always a good one, as was indicated in the Hadith of Ka’b ibn Maalik, may Allah be pleased with him, when he was absent from the Battle of Tabook. He said: "I told the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam: 'O Messenger of Allah! I swear by Allah that if I were to be addressing any other powerful person in this world, I would have escaped his wrath by proffering any excuse for I am an expert in argumentation, but I swear by Allah that I know that if I tell you a lie today in order to win your pleasure, Allah might cause you to be angry with me; but if I tell you the truth and you become angry with me, my hope is that Allah will therefore pardon me in the end (as a result of my truthfulness).’ (Bukhari & Muslim).
Truth is behaviour that Allah and His Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam love. It is a characteristic whose virtues are recognised by all who are reasonable and wise. The Prophet of mercy sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam called for truthfulness along with the sincere worship of Allah from the very beginning of his mission; Abu Sufyaan, may Allah be pleased with him, narrated that Heraclius the Roman Emperor asked about the Messenger of Allah: "What does he command you to do?" So Abu Sufyaan, may Allah be pleased with him, replied: "He says: Worship Allah alone and associate nothing with Him, and abandon the statements of your forefathers. He also commanded us to pray, be truthful, remain chaste and be kind to our kith and kin." (Al-Bukhari).
Allah says that which means: “Indeed, the Muslim men and Muslim women, the believing men and believing women, the obedient men and obedient women, the truthful men and truthful women, the patient men and patient women, the humble men and humble women, the charitable men and charitable women, the fasting men and fasting women, the men who guard their private parts and the women who do so, and the men who remember Allah often and the women who do so – for them Allah has prepared forgiveness and a great reward.” (Al-Ahzaab: 35).
Therefore, endeavour to be among those who are truthful in their speech and deeds, for truthfulness is one of the gateways to Paradise. Truthfulness does not bring about early death, nor does it prevent wealth or ruin one’s interests.
It is part of truthfulness to keep away from treachery and deceit and the worst form of lying is to lie about Allah; also, another of the worst forms of lying is to lie about Islam by ascribing to it that which it is free from, such as aggression and injustice, for Islam is the religion of mercy and compassion.
Allah says that which means: “And We have not sent you, [O Muhammad], except as a mercy to the worlds.” Islam is the religion of justice, equity and kindness, as Allah says that which means: “Indeed, Allah orders justice and good conduct and giving to relatives and forbids immorality and bad conduct and oppression…” (An-Nahl: 90). Islam is the religion of trustworthiness and sincerity, as Allah says that which means: “Indeed Allah commands you to render trusts to whom they are due and when you judge between people to judge with justice.” (An-Nisaa’: 58).
Therefore, it is extremely disheartening that the religion of Islam is now being afflicted with those who invent a catalogue of lies and attribute them to Islam. In this age, aggression, oppression and vandalism are wrongly and mischievously attributed to Islam while Islam with its pure teachings, noble laws and mercifully perfect injunctions condemns, opposes and prevents aggression, injustice, and mischief that are aimed at innocent people whether Muslims or otherwise, as Allah says that which means: “…But do not commit aggression. Indeed Allah does not like aggressors.” (Al-Baqarah: 190).
Therefore, Islam is the religion of truth that enjoins all which is good and forbids all that is evil and harmful to humankind.