Praise be to Allaah.
If a person for whom Jumu'ah is obligatory does not attend and does not have a valid excuse, this is a major sin. Whoever does not attend three Jumu'ahs (in a row) out of negligence has a seal placed over his heart and is regarded as one of the ghaafileen (negligent, heedless). Muslim narrated in his Saheeh from Abu Hurayrah and Ibn 'Umar (may Allaah be pleased with them both), that they heard the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon them) say from his minbar: "People should definitely stop neglecting Jumu'ah, or else Allaah will most certainly seal their hearts and they will most certainly be among the ghaafileen."
According to another hadeeth: "Whoever neglects three jumu'ahs (in a row) out of negligence will have a seal placed upon his heart." This is a spiritual punishment, which is more severe that a physical punishment such as imprisonment or flogging. The Muslim ruler should punish those who fail to attend Jumu'ah prayers with no excuse, as a deterrent. Let each Muslim fear Allaah and not miss performing one of the obligatory duties enjoined by Him, lest he expose himself to the punishment of Allaah; let him adhere to that which Allaah has made obligatory so that he may earn the reward of Allaah. And Allaah bestows His Bounty upon whomsoever He wills.
Written by Shaykh 'Abd al-Rahmaan al-Barraak.