An action cannot be an act of worship unless it includes two things: complete love and complete humility. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
âBut those who believe, love Allaah more (than anything else)â
âVerily, those who live in awe for fear of their Lordâ
And Allaah mentions them together in the aayah (interpretation of the meaning):
âVerily, they used to hasten on to do good deeds, and they used to call on Us with hope and fear, and used to humble themselves before Usâ [al-Anbiyaâ 21:90]
Once this is understood, we will realize that worship can only be accepted from a Muslim who believes in Allaah alone (Tawheed), as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
âAnd We shall turn to whatever deeds they (disbelievers, polytheists, sinners) did, and We shall make such deeds as scattered floating particles of dustâ [al-Furqaan 25:23]
In Saheeh Muslim (214) it is narrated that âAaâishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) said: âI said, âO Messenger of Allaah, during the Jaahiliyyah, Ibn Judâaan used to uphold the ties of kinship and feed the poor. Will that avail him anything?â He said, âIt will not avail him anything because he never said, âO Allaah, forgive me my sins on the Day of Judgementâââ â i.e., he did not believe in the resurrection or do good deeds hoping to meet Allaah.
Moreover, the Muslimâs worship will not be accepted unless it meets two basic conditions:
1 â Sincerity of intention towards Allaah, which means that the personâs intention in all his words and deeds, both outward and inward, is to seek the pleasure of Allaah and none other.
2 â It should be in accordance with the shareeâah which Allaah has prescribed, and he should not worship Allaah in any other way. That is achieved by following the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and what he brought, and shunning anything that goes against it, and not inventing any new form of worship that has not been narrated in sound reports from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).
The evidence for these two conditions is the aayah (interpretation of the meaning):
âSo whoever hopes for the Meeting with his Lord, let him work righteousness and associate none as a partner in the worship of his Lordâ [al-Kahf 18:110]
Ibn Katheer (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: â âSo whoever hopes for the Meeting with his Lordâ means his reward; âlet him work righteousnessâ means, that which is in accordance with the laws of Allaah; âand associate none as a partner in the worship of his Lordâ this means seeking the Face of Allaah alone, with no partner or associate. These two conditions are the basis of acceptable deeds, which must be sincerely for the sake of Allaah alone and correct according to the shareeâah of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).