The Methodology Of The Prophets in Calling to Allaah: The Path to Rectification
In the subject of rectification, it’s beginning and foundation is the worship of Allāh alone, i.e. pure monotheism (in Arabic: Tawhīd). This was the purpose of the sending of the Prophets and the foundation of their call. Allāh stated in the Quran:
“And we sent to every nation a messenger, calling them to the worship of Allāh alone and away from the worship of the false deities.” 
Allāh mentions regarding the Prophet Nūh (Noah):
“And we sent Nūh to his people, so he said to them: O my people worship Allāh, you have nothing worthy of worship other than Him. Indeed I fear for you the punishment of a severe day.” 
Regarding the Prophet Hūd:
“And to the tribe of ʿĀd, We sent their brother Hūd. He said to them: O my people worship Allāh, you have nothing worthy of worship other than Him.” 
Allāh, the Most High, mentions the same regarding the Prophets Sālih, Shuʿayb, Ibrāhīm (Abraham) and many others. Indeed the final Messenger Muhammad sent his Companions to other lands with the same call, making this invitation to pure monotheism (tawhīd) the starting point and pinnacle of rectification of the people. When the Prophet sent his Companion Muʿādh bin Jabal to Yemen, he said to him:
“I am sending you to the people of the Scripture. So let the first thing that you call them to be the sole worship of Allāh, the Most High. If they acknowledge that, then inform them that Allāh has obligated upon them five prayers throughout their day and night; if they pray, then inform them that Allāh has obligated upon them charity from their wealth, taken from their wealthy and given to their poor. If they accept that, then take it from them…” 
This narration informs that there are many essential affairs in the Religion that cannot be neglected. It also clearly shows the order of importance and the order of establishing the essential obligations. That is to say that the greatest obligation is the belief of the Muslim, upon which is established the rest of the affairs of the Religion. So it was the Tawhīd of Allāh for which we were created, and thus that is the starting point, as Allāh has stated:
“I did not create the Jinn and Mankind except to worship me alone.” 
The Companion of the Messenger, ʿUbādah bin as-Sāmit said: Allāh’s Messenger was in an assembly of his disciples and said:
“Swear allegiance to me with the pledge that you will not associate anything in worship with Allāh, and that you will not steal, nor fornicate, nor kill your children…” 
With great regret, those who claim that they are rectifying and bringing about good for the Muslims and making claims to the banner of rectification of the Ummah, are the severest in opposition to this principle. Instead, they spread ideas of revolution and rebellion night and day, opposing governments and regimes. So they have no true adherence to this principle, except that some may claim attachment to it ‘superficially only to deceive the population, throwing dust in their eyes whilst preparing them to embark upon political goals’7. They highlight one aspect of Islamic faith, exaggerate and distort its understanding, then politicise it and make it the core message of their sect – then they claim this is the Tawhīd that Allāh sent the Messengers with! 
Rectification first begins with the individual through cultivation upon the sound Islamic Creed, and adherence to the Prophetic Path (Sunnah) in worship, morals, manners and dealings, and this rectification then filters into the society as a whole. It does not begin by trying to impose change upon the society through political means, and nor does it begin (or end) with deposing the rulers and the governments, since it is a divine principle that the rulers are only a manifestation of the society they live in. Rather every person begins with rectifying him or herself, then those who are close to him and then those who are close to them, and so on.
Allāh, the Most Perfect, stated:
“Indeed Allāh will not change the condition of a nation until they change what is within themselves. But when Allāh wills a people’s punishment, there can be no turning back of it, and they will find besides Him no protector.” 
So a person rectifies himself first then those who are close to him, as Allāh, the Most High, stated:
“O you, who believe, save yourselves and your families from the fire whose fuel is men and stone.” 
He, the Most High, commanded the Prophet Muhammad with firstly:
“And warn your tribe (O Muhammad), those of near relations.” 
So the path of rectification begins with the Muslim himself. Focusing upon the rulers and the governments is a convenient diversion that deludes a person into concentrating upon the mistakes of others rather than looking at one’s own shortcomings, and it is a contradiction of the Qurānic and Prophetic texts. The rectification of oneself leads to the rectification of the family. The rectification of the family leads to the rectification of the locality. The rectification of the locality leads to the rectification of society. 
4 Al-Bukhārī no. 7372 and Muslim, no. 19.
6 Al-Bukhārī, no. 233; Muslim nos. 4235-4238.
7 Muhammad bin ʿUmar Sālim Bāzmool, Bayraqul-Ummah fi Qadāya Muhimmah.
8 They call this at-Tawhīd al-Hākimiyah (singling out Allāh alone for Judgement), and give it its own independent categorisation that was never done before this century. They distort its meaning and use it as an instrument to declare the rulers to be apostates due to their sins and justify revolution. As for the true understanding of Hākimiyyah, then it is included in one’s servitude of Allāh; that every Muslim is obligated to judge by that which Allāh has revealed; and it is from Allah’s Lordship in that He is the Sovereign and dominion belongs to Him. Visit salafipublications.com for a complete discussion of the deviated claim that at-Tawhīd al-Hākimiyyah is a distinct category of Tawhīd.
12 Muhammad bin ʿUmar Sālim Bāzmool, Bayraqul-Ummah fi Qadāya Muhimmah.