Knowledge of the Prophet ﷺ leads to  Love of him ﷺ. Love of the Prophet ﷺ leads to  complete emulation of him.
 As for knowing the Prophet ﷺ, then Allah Almighty says: ﴾Do they not know their messenger, and thus they deny him?﴿ [Al-Mu’minun, 23:69] and He says: ﴾Say, I urge unto one thing only; that you stand before Allah in pairs or individuals and then reflect: There is not a trace of madness in your companion. He is only a warner to you before a severe punishment.﴿ [Al-Saba’, 34:46] So, reflecting on the Messenger of Allah ﷺ and absorbing your thought into his prophethood and personality is a religious obligation.
 As for loving the Prophet ﷺ, then Allah Almighty says: ﴾The Prophet is more closer to the believers than their own selves.﴿ [Al-Ahzab, 33:6] and the Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: “None of you truly believes until I am more beloved to him than his father, his son and all of humankind.” [Bukhari, §15] So, the perfection of one’s faith is only achieved with the love of the Prophet ﷺ.
 As for emulating the Prophet ﷺ, then Allah Almighty says: ﴾Say, if you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive your sins. Allah is Most-forgiving, Most-merciful.﴿ [Al ‘Imran, 3:31] and He says: ﴾Nay, by your Lord, they will never be true believers until they accept you as judge between them in all matters of dispute, and then they find no resistance in their souls to your decisions, and they submit totally.﴿ [Al-Nisa’, 4:65] So, the elevation of a person’s spiritual station and the attainment of Allah’s pleasure will be according to the degree of one’s emulation of and submission to the Prophet ﷺ.
Although these spheres have been separated, they are, in reality, and for all means and purposes, intertwined and reciprocally enforce one another. Thus, a Muslim must always be increasing in his knowledge, love and emulation of the Prophet ﷺ every day.
Knowledge, love and emulation create a resemblance and similarity between the Messenger of Allah ﷺ and his believing inheritor in terms of his actions and comport, his character and appearance, and his reality and spiritual essence. The most perfect and total prophetic inheritance is one which is drowned in all the facets, completely, at every moment and in all situations.
al-Qaddumi, al-’Ulum al-Nabawiyyah pg. 30 – 32
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