When he says fight, he means fighting you…the kuffar. via Cleric Saalim At-Taweel: Jihad for the Sake of Allah Means Fighting the Infidels to Make Them Convert to Islam; Enslaving Infidels Is One of the Virtues of Islam h/t Dr. Bill Warner
Kuwaiti cleric Sheikh Saalim Bin Sa’d At-Taweel published a lecture on his official YouTube channel explaining the concept of Jihad. Sheikh At-Taweel said that while “Jihad” has different meanings, “Jihad for the sake of Allah” means fighting infidels in order to spread Islam. He further explained that slavery is part of Islam and said that Muslims should not try to deny this. In fact, he said, slavery is “one of the virtues of Islam” because it provides infidels with an opportunity to become Muslims and avoid the Hellfire. Over the past decade, Sheikh At-Taweel has made several visits to the United States and was guest lecturer in mosques in Worcester, Massachusetts, Modesto, California, and New York, and elsewhere. In 2016, he participated in the 3rd Annual U.K. National Knowledge Conference.
This is not an isolated imam. It’s pure Islamic ideology that states Jihad is The Highest Peak of Islam.
We must realise that Jihad is a pillar of Islam and was described as its peak by Sayyidina Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). It is the thing, which Allah (Subhanahu Wa ta’ala) in the Qur’an states that gives the Ummah life; indeed Umar ibn al Khattab (ra) stated, “There is no izza (honour) without Jihad”. Hence any misunderstanding of this vital concept would have huge ramifications. Hence, it is necessary to have a clear understanding of Jihad and make clear these corruptions, which have been propagated by the Kuffar, their agent rulers and their “scholars”.
Some have attempted to justify their stance on this concept with what is apparently intended as a daleel (Islamic evidence), and so have used a narration to justify this concept of Jihad an-Nafs or dealing with all the political and military problems we face by becoming introspective or looking inwardly as opposed to looking at the Ahkam Shari’ah and seeing what Allah (Subhanahu Wa ta’ala) has demanded from us.
So they use what they claim is a hadith, or saying of Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), “We have returned from the lesser Jihad to the greater Jihad, that is the struggle against the evil of oneself.” This is in fact a fabrication and is known as Mawdu’ (spurious). Hafidh al Iraqi and Ibn Hajar al Asqalani, who were hadith masters and muhaditheen, who memorised one hundred thousand hadith by Isnad and were qualified to scrutinise hadith and their authenticity, stated that this was not a saying of the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) but was in fact a statement that was made by someone in the later generation named Ibrahim ibn Abi Yabla. Hence, this is not considered an evidence in the Islamic Shari’ah.
To elaborate further, it is in contradiction with the subject matter of Jihad that has been elaborated in over a hundred ayat of the Qur’an that have come with the meaning of Jihad being Qitaal, which means to slay or to kill or to fight. This was how the Prophet (Sallallahu Sallallahu “>Alaihi Wasallam) and the Sahabah (ra) understood it. To give an example from the Seerah that was narrated by Ibn Majah with a source in Bukhari, woman came to the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) and asked “O Messenger of Allah! Is Jihad obliged upon the women?” To which he responded, “Yes, a Jihad without Qitaal (fighting), it is the Hajj and the Umrah!”
This clearly demonstrates that Jihad is Qitaal i.e. Jihad is undertaking the physical fighting and this is how it was understood by the woman and the Prophet (Sallallahu Sallallahu “>Alaihi Wasallam), as explained in the Prophet’s (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) answer i.e. Jihad in Islam means fighting.