All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, and surely the victory (at the end) is for those who are pious and there is no enmity except to those who oppress. I bear witness that there is no deity worthy of worship except for Allah alone having no partners and I bear witness that Muhammad is His slave and His Messenger.
1. Indeed it is from the boastings of Islam and from the proofs of its greatness that it had a people that were cultivated at the hands of the noble Prophet, peace be upon him. These people were known as the Companions (sahabah) of the Prophet and from the Companions of the Prophet were the "Rightly Guided Successors" as well as leaders of conquests, scholars of jurisprudence, judges who ruled with justice and those who called to the way of their Lord with beautiful advice.
It is without a doubt that these noble companions, may Allah be pleased with them all, played a large part in the advent of Islam, where they assisted it when it came to the lands of the Arabs as something new and strange and they struggled for it in wake of oppression and calamities afflicted upon them in the time that it was arising.
So the tree of Islam was watered with their blood and its fruits were ripened with their sacrifices and through their excellence did the light of Islam spread throughout the world and did its strength stretch towards the East of the Earth and its West and there was not a single nation that entered the fold of Islam after the Prophet, peace be upon him, except by way of them and there is not a single act of goodness and benefit except that its excellence returns to one of these great Companions, may Allah be pleased with them all.
And certainly a poet elucidated upon the importance of these noble companions when he said:
What greatness is there for Islam except with their shadow ...
And what glory is there except with that they built and erected.
All of this is what necessitated that Allah, the Most High, send praise upon His Prophet and in the same context send praise upon the noble Companions of the Prophet where He promises them with forgiveness and a great reward where He, the Most Exalted, says:
"Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, and those who are with him are stern against the disbelievers and merciful amongst themselves. When you see them you will find them bowing down, falling prostrate, and seeking Allah's favour and good pleasure. They have the marks of prostration on their faces. This is their description in the Torah; and in the Gospel they have been likened to a crop which put out its shoot, then strengthened it, then swelled and then stood on its own stem, filling the sowers with delight and the disbelievers with rage. Allah has promised those of them who believe and do good works, forgiveness and an immense reward." [Al-Qur'an 48:29]
2. Certainly, the enemies of Islam understood that the easiest way to overcome this religion of Islam is when they turned to the leading lights of this Nation (Ummah) and vilified their noble characters by placing doubt upon their justness and in doing so they have bereaved them of their status and truthfulness in front of the people and have destroyed the framework of Islam from its very foundations.
And this explains what the enemies of Islam undertook (and are still continuing with) in respects to vilifying the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, arriving at this filthy goal and they have done exactly the same with regards to the Companions.
And it was during the governorship of 'Uthman ibn 'Affan that one of the malicious and spiteful Jews by the name of 'Abdullah ibn Sab'a slipped into the ranks of the Muslims by pretending to accept Islam. Thereafter this enemy of Allah hatched his malicious plan of opposing the great Companions of the Messenger of Allah pretending to have a great love for the household of the Prophet (ahlul-bayt) and having a bigoted love for Al-Imam 'Ali ibn Abi Talib, may Allah be pleased with him.
3. It was the scholars and thinkers of this Nation who stood to refute these evil attempts at vilifying the companions in the times when these attempts arose, but the enemies of Islam were not from those who rested having great zeal and to this day they still strive hard in their task of misguiding the Nation by disfiguring the noble characteristics of the Companions in their gatherings and publications and continually spreading their circle of activity day by day.
4. In light of this, verily it is upon the callers to stand with what is obligatory upon them from safeguarding the beliefs of this Nation from those who would try and steal them or confuse the people concerning them and to raise their voices in defence of their righteous predecessors against the one who would try to vilify their characters and dirty their history.
In ending, I ask Allah, the Most High, to make us from those who call to the truth and are just with it. I ask Him also to protect us from those trials that come to us openly and those that are hidden.
There is no success except by the will of Allah, in Him do we place our trust and from Him do we seek forgiveness.