QUESTION: What are the best topics to teach new Muslims?
ANSWER: The best format to give Dawah (guiding people) is to follow the methodology which the Prophet adopted. When he sent Mouaz ibn Jabal to the people of Yemen he instructed him to invite them first to monotheism, to the oneness of Allah, to the word of (Tawheed) There is no God worthy of worship but Allah and that is Mohammed is His messenger. So if they respond then the upcoming instructions will be much easier as they do recognize who is the commander of do and not to do. So the most important topic to focus on is the wellness of Allah. As the prophet was commanded by Allah the All Mighty to do that as Allah says;
قُلْ يَا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ تَعَالَوْا إِلَى كَلِمَةٍ سَوَاءٍ بَيْنَنَا وَبَيْنَكُمْ أَلا نَعْبُدَ إِلاَّ اللَّهَ وَلا نُشْرِكَ بِهِ شَيْئًا وَلا يَتَّخِذَ بَعْضُنَا بَعْضًا أَرْبَابًا مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ فَإِنْ تَوَلَّوْا فَقُولُوا اشْهَدُوا بِأَنَّا مُسْلِمُونَ
Say (O Muhammad SAW): "O people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians): Come to a word that is just between us and you, that we worship none but Allâh, and that we associate no partners with Him, and that none of us shall take others as lords besides Allâh. Then, if they turn away, say: "Bear witness that we are Muslims."
It is not worth it to begin talking to non Muslims about very detailed matters which are not beneficial at the being while neglecting the most important one. The Prophet spent thirteen years in Makkah establishing this very important foundation of monotheism .The unity of Allah's Names and Attributes, the Unity of Lordship and the Unity of Worship. We have to be very clear when we explain this subject to non Muslim and clarify what the core of Islam is and how it differs from any other religion as Islam has been established on monotheism.
The Prophet was ordered by Allah to do the following as He says;
Surah Muhammad 47:19
فَاعْلَمْ أَنَّهُ لا إِلَهَ إِلاَّ اللَّهُ وَاسْتَغْفِرْ لِذَنْبِكَ وَلِلْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتِ وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ مُتَقَلَّبَكُمْ وَمَثْوَاكُمْ
So know (O Muhammad SAW) that Lâ ilâha ill-Allâh (none has the right to be worshipped but Allâh), and ask forgiveness for your sin, and also for (the sin of) believing men and believing women. And Allâh knows well your moving about, and your place of rest (in your homes).
The most important knowledge is to acknowledge that there is no one worthy of worship but Allah . The concept of belief (Aqeeda) and all its related subjects are very important. My advice is to start with the Hadith of Jabril (angel Gabriel) in which he was asking and the Prophet was answering, he asked the Prophet about Islam, Iman and Ihsaan. Begin with the foundation. What is Islam? Then focus on the six articles of faith, when Jabril asked the Prophet about faith or Iman , the Prophet said; al Iman or the belief is to believe in Allah , His angels, His books, His messengers, the last day(resurrection) and the pre ordained decree whether it is good or bad. So each article of faith is a subject by itself if it is explained correctly and in details. The invitee will be a true believer as he will be able to recognize the truth about the oneness of Allah and along with that he will be able to worship Him in a proper way and as He instructed us because the concepts of unity of Allah's Name and Attributes, Lordship and Worship are inseparable.
from Ask huda program