Just as Ramadan has the supremacy over all other months, Laylatul Qadr over other nights of the year, so is Jummah (Friday) over rest of the days of the week. Muslims are blessed with three occasions to celebrate of which two are celebrated yearly (Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Azha) and one is celebrated weekly, the Jummah. Jummah is also known as Eid-ul-Mumineen (festival of true believers).
Jummah is blessed; auspicious and prominent day for a Muslim. Prophet PBUH said: “Jummah is the best of days. It was on this day that Prophet Adam (AS) was created, it was on this day that he was granted entry into Jannah, it was on this day that he was removed from Jannah (which is a precursor for human existence in this universe, and Alhamdulillah is a great blessing), and the day of resurrection will also be evidenced on this day.” [Sahih Muslim]. Narrated Abu Hurairah: I heard ALLAH’s Apostle PBUH saying, “We (Muslims) are Scriptures before us. And this was their day (Jummah) the celebration of which was made compulsory for them but they differed about it. So ALLAH gave us the guidance for it (Friday) and all the other people are behind us in this respect: the Jews’ the last (to come) but (will be) the foremost on the Day of Resurrection though the former nations were given the Holy (holy day is) tomorrow (i.e. Saturday) and the Christians’ (is) the day after tomorrow (i.e. Sunday).” [Sahih Bukhari].
Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (RA) narrated: On the pulpit in the mosque of Kufah: When Jummah appears, the devils go to the markets with their flags, and involve people in their needs and prevent them from the Jummah prayer. The angels come early in the morning, sit at the door of the masjid, and record that so-and-so came at the first hour, and so-and-so came at the second hour until the imam calls out Qutbah – Jummah sermon. When a man sits in a place where he can listen (to the sermon) and look (at the imam), where he remains silent and does not interrupt, he will receive a double reward. If he stays away, sits in a place where he cannot listen (to the sermon), silent, and does not interrupt, he will receive the reward only once. If he sits in a place where he can listen (to the sermon) and look (at the imam), and he does not remain silent, he will have the burden of it. If anyone says to his companion sitting beside him to be silent (while the imam is delivering the sermon), he is guilty of idle talk. Anyone who interrupts (during the sermon) will receive nothing (no reward) on that Jummah. Then he (the narrator) says in the end of this tradition: I heard the Apostle of ALLAH SWT say so. [Abu Dawood]
Jummah is obligatory on every Muslim who has attained the age of puberty and who is sane. If he fails to attend without a valid excuse, then it is a major sin. Whoever does not attend three Jummahs (in a row) out of negligence; his heart is sealed and is regarded as one of the ghaafileen (negligent, heedless). Abu Hurairah and Ibn ‘Umar (may ALLAH be pleased with them both) said, that they heard the Prophet PBUH saying from his pulpit, “People should definitely stop neglecting Jummah, or else ALLAH will most certainly seal their hearts and they will most certainly be among the ghaafileen.” [Muslim]
The punishment for remaining absent from Jummah is severe in a state ruled by a Muslim. The hakim (ruler) can flog or imprison such a person. Hence we all must fear ALLAH and strive to attend Jummah without fail.
Taking of Ghusl (bathing), use of siwak and applying perfume are few things that Prophet PBUH used to practice on Friday. Most of the religious scholars are of the opinion that bathing on Jummah is Wajib on every Muslim whereas applying perfume and using siwak is not. Narrated Abu Sayeed: I testify that ALLAH’s Apostle said, “The taking of a bath on Jummah is compulsory for every male Muslim who has attained the age of puberty and (also) the cleaning of his teeth with Siwak, and the using of perfume if it is available.” Amr (a sub-narrator) said, “I confirm that the taking of a bath is compulsory, but as for the Siwak and the using of perfume, ALLAH knows better whether it is obligatory or not, but according to the Hadith it is as above.” [Bukhari]. On one Friday, Prophet PBUH said: “O Muslims! ALLAH SWT has made this day a day of Eid. So take bath on this day, whoever has perfume should apply it, and use the miswaak.” [Ibn Majah]
Prophet PBUH said “Whoever recites Surat Al-Kahf on Friday; it will illuminate him with light from one Friday to the next.” [Ahmed].
Pray we all respect and benefit from the blessed day of Jummah and ALLAH guide us so that we become among the ones who are enlightened. Aameen