Surah An-Nisa’ Part 9 Ayat 95-113

{95. Not equal are those of the believers who sit (at home), except those who are disabled, and those who strive hard and fight in the cause of Allah with their wealth and their lives. Allah has preferred in grades those who strive hard and fight with their wealth and their lives above those who sit (at home). Unto each, Allah has promised good (Paradise), but Allah has preferred those who strive hard and fight, above those who sit (at home), by a huge reward.

96. Degrees of (higher) grades from Him, and forgiveness and mercy. And Allah is Ever Oft- Forgiving, Most Merciful.}

The Mujahid and those Who Do not Join Jihad are Not the Same, [and Jihad is Fard Kifayah]

Al-Bukhari recorded that Al-Bara’ said, “When the Ayah, ”Not equal are those of the believers who sit (at home)” was revealed, the Messenger of Allah called Zayd and commanded him to write it. Then, Ibn Umm Maktum came and mentioned that he was blind. Allah revealed, ”except those who are disabled (by injury or are blind or lame).” (Fath Al-Bari 8:108)

Al-Bukhari recorded that Sahl bin Sad As-Sadi said, “I saw Marwan bin Al-Hakam sitting in the Masjid. I came and sat by his side. He told us that Zayd bin Thabit told him that Allah’s Messenger dictated this Ayah to him, ”Not equal are those of the believers who sit (at home), except those who are disabled, and those who strive hard and fight in the cause of Allah”

Ibn Umm Maktum came to the Prophet as he was dictating that very Ayah to me. Ibn Umm Maktum said, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! By Allah, if I had power, I would surely take part in Jihad.’ He was a blind man. So Allah sent down revelation to His Messenger while his thigh was on mine and it became so heavy for me that I feared that my thigh would be broken. That ended after Allah revealed, ”except those who are disabled.” (Fath Al-Bari 8:108) At-Tirmidhi recorded that Ibn Abbas said, ”Not equal are those of the believers who sit (at home), except those who are disabled”, refers to those who did not go to the battle of Badr and those who went to Badr. When the battle of Badr was about to occur, Abu Ahmad bin Jahsh and Ibn Umm Maktum said, ‘We are blind, O Messenger of Allah! Do we have an excuse?’ The Ayah, ”Not equal are those of the believers who sit (at home), except those who are disabled” was revealed.

Allah made those who fight, above those who sit in their homes not hindered by disability. ”but Allah has preferred those who strive hard and fight, above those who sit (at home), by a huge reward. Degrees of (higher) grades from Him”, above the believers who sit at home without a disability hindering them.” This is the wording recorded by At-Tirmidhi, who said, “Hasan Gharib”. (Tuhfat Al-Ahwadhi 8:388)

Allah’s statement, “Not equal are those of the believers who sit (at home)” this is general. Soon after, the revelation came down with, ”except those who are disabled”. So whoever has a disability, such as blindness, a limp, or an illness that prevents them from joining Jihad, they were not compared to the Mujahidin who strive in Allah’s cause with their selves and wealth, as those who are not disabled and did not join the Jihad were.

In his Sahih, Al-Bukhari recorded that Anas said that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“There are people who remained in Al-Madinah, who were with you in every march you marched and every valley you crossed.”

They said, “While they are still in Al-Madinah, O Messenger of Allah?” He said,

‘Yes. Only their disability hindered them (from joining you)” (Fath Al-Bari 7:732)

Allah said, ”Unto each, Allah has promised good” meaning, Paradise and tremendous rewards. This Ayah indicates that Jihad is not Fard on each and every individual, but it is Fard Kifayah (which is a collective duty). Allah then said, ”but Allah has preferred those who strive hard and fight, above those who sit (at home), by a huge reward”.

Allah mentions what He has given them rooms in Paradise, along with His forgiveness and the descent of mercy and blessing on them, as a favor and honor from Him. So He said; ”Degrees of (higher) grades from Him, and forgiveness and mercy. And Allah is Ever Oft- Forgiving, Most Merciful”.

In the Two Sahihs, it is recorded that Abu Said Al-Khudri said that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

”There are a hundred grades in Paradise that Allah has prepared for the Mujahidin in His cause, between each two grades is the distance between heaven and Earth.” (Muslim 3:1501)

 

 {97. Verily, as for those whom the angels take (in death) while they are wronging themselves, they (angels) say (to them): “In what (condition) were you?” They reply: “We were weak and oppressed on the earth.” They (angels) say: “Was not the earth of Allah spacious enough for you to emigrate therein?” Such men will find their abode in Hell – what an evil destination! 

98. Except the weak ones among men, women and children who cannot devise a plan, nor are they able to direct their way.

99. These are they whom Allah is likely to forgive them, and Allah is Ever Oft-Pardoning, Oft-Forgiving.

100. He who emigrates in the cause of Allah, will find on earth many dwelling places and plenty to live by. And whosoever leaves his home as an emigrant unto Allah and His Messenger, and death overtakes him, his reward is then surely incumbent upon Allah. And Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.}

The Prohibition of Residing Among the Disbelievers While Able to Emigrate

Al-Bukhari recorded that Muhammad bin Abdur-Rahman, Abu Al-Aswad, said, “The people of Al-Madinah were forced to prepare an army (to fight against the people of Ash-Sham during the Khilafah of Abdullah bin Az-Zubayir at Makkah), and I was enlisted in it. Then I met Ikrimah, the freed slave of Ibn Abbas, and informed him (about it), and he forbade me strongly from doing so (i.e., to enlist in that army), and then he said to me, Ibn Abbas told me that some Muslims used to go out with the idolators increasing the size of their army against the Messenger of Allah . Then, an arrow would hit one of them and kill him, or he would be struck on his neck (with a sword) and killed, and Allah sent down the Ayah, ”Verily, as for those whom the angels take (in death) while they are wronging themselves.” (Fath Al-Bari 8:111)

Ad- Dahhak stated that this Ayah was revealed about some hypocrites who did not join the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, but remained in Makkah and went out with the idolators for the battle of Badr. They were killed among those who were killed. Thus, this honorable Ayah was revealed (At-Tabari 9:108) about those who reside among the idolators, while able to perform Hijrah and unable to practice the faith. Such people will be committing injustice against themselves and falling into a prohibition according to the consensus and also according to this Ayah, ”Verily, as for those whom the angels take (in death) while they are wronging themselves” by refraining from Hijrah, ”They (angels) say (to them): “In what (condition) were you?” meaning, why did you remain here and not perform Hijrah ”They reply: “We were weak and oppressed on the earth.” meaning, we are unable to leave the land or move about in the earth, ”They (angels) say: “Was not the earth of Allah spacious enough for you?”

Abu Dawud recorded that Samurah bin Jundub said that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

”Whoever mingles with the idolator and resides with him, he is just like him.” (Abu Dawud 3:224)

Allah’s statement, ”Except the weak” until the end of the Ayah, is an excuse that Allah gives for this type of people not to emigrate, because they are unable to free themselves from the idolators. And even if they did, they would not know which way to go. This is why Allah said, ”Who cannot devise a plan, nor are they able to direct their way?”, meaning, they do not find the way to emigrate, as Mujahid, Ikrimah and As-Suddi stated. (At-Tabari 9:111) Allah’s statement, ”These are they whom Allah is likely to forgive them” means, pardon them for not migrating, and here, ‘likely’ means He shall, ”and Allah is Ever Oft-Pardoning, Oft-Forgiving”.

Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Hurayrah said, “While the Messenger of Allah was praying Isha’, he said, Sami Allahu Liman Hamidah.’ He then said before he prostrated,

”O Allah! Save Ayyash bin Abi Rabiah. O Allah! Save Salamah bin Hisham. O Allah! Save Al- Walid bin Al-Walid. O Allah! Save the weak Muslims. O Allah! Be very hard on Mudar tribe. O Allah! Afflict them with years (of famine) similar to the (famine) years of the time of Prophet Yusuf.” (Al-Bukhari no.804)

Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu An-Numan said that Hammad bin Zayd said that Ayyub narrated that Ibn Abi Mulaykah said that Ibn Abbas commented on the verse, ”Except the weak ones among men’‘, “I and my mother were among those (weak ones) whom Allah excused.” (Fath Al-Bari 8:113)

Allah’s statement, ”He who emigrates in the cause of Allah, will find on earth many dwelling places and plenty to live by.” this encourages the believers to perform Hijrah and abandon the idolators, for wherever the believer emigrates, he will find a safe refuge to resort to. Mujahid said that, ”many dwelling places” means, he will find a way out of what he dislikes. Allah’s statement, ”…will find on earth many dwelling places and plenty to live by.”  refers to provision. Qatadah also said that, “… will find on the earth many places to live by.” means, Allah will take him from misguidance to guidance and from poverty to richness. Allah’s statement, ”And whosoever leaves his home as an emigrant unto Allah and His Messenger, and death overtakes him, his reward is then surely, incumbent upon Allah.” means, whoever starts emigrating and dies on the way, he will acquire the reward of those who emigrate for Allah. The Two Sahihs, along with the Musnad and Sunan compilers, recorded that Umar bin Al- Khattab said that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

”The reward of deeds depends upon the intentions, and every person will be rewarded according to what he has intended. So, whoever emigrated to Allah and His Messenger, then his emigration is for Allah and His Messenger. And whoever emigrated for worldly benefits or for a woman to marry, his emigration is for what he emigrated for.” (Fath Al-Bari 1:164)

This Hadith is general, it applies to Hijrah as well as every other deed. In the Two Sahihs, it is recorded that a man killed ninety-nine people and completed the number one hundred when he killed a worshipper. He then asked a scholar if he has a chance to repent. The scholar said, “What prevents you from repentance?” The scholar told the killer to emigrate from his land to another land where Allah is worshipped. When he left his land and started on the migration to the other land, death overtook him on the way. The angels of mercy and the angels of torment disputed about the man, whereas the former said that he went out in repentance, while the latter said that he did not arrive at his destination. They were commanded to measure the distance between the two lands and to whichever land he is closer to, he will be considered part of that land. Allah commanded that the righteous land to move closer and the land of evil to move farther. The angels found that he died closer to the land that he intended to emigrate to by a hand-span, and thus the angels of mercy captured his soul. In another narration, when death came to that man, he moved his chest towards the righteous village that he emigrated to. (Fath Al-Bari 6:591)

 

{101. And when you Darabtum in the land, there is no sin on you if you shorten the Salah if you fear that the disbelievers may put you in trial, verily, the disbelievers are ever unto you open enemies.}

Salat Al-Qasr, Shortening the Prayer

Allah said, ”And when you Darabtum in the land” meaning if you travel in the land. In another Ayah, Allah said,

”He knows that there will be some among you sick, others Yadribuna (traveling) through the land, seeking of Allah’s bounty…” (73:20).

Allah’s statement, ”there is no sin on you if you shorten the Salah (prayer)” by reducing (the units of the prayer) from four to two. Allah’s statement, ”if you fear that the disbelievers may put you in trial (attack you)”, refers to the typical type of fear prevalent when this Ayah was revealed. In the beginning of Islam, and after the Hijrah, Muslims used to experience fear during most of their travels. Rather, they restricted their movements to large or short military expeditions. During that era, most areas were areas of combatant enemies of Islam and its people. But when the prevalent circumstances cease, or a new situation is prevalent, decrees of this nature may not be understood, as Allah said; ”And force not your slave girls to prostitution, if they desire chastity”. And His saying; ”And your stepdaughters, under your guardianship, born of your wives whom you have gone into”

Imam Ahmad recorded that Yala bin Umayyah said, “I asked Umar bin Al-Khattab about the verse: ”there is no sin on you if you shorten the prayer. If you fear that the disbelievers may put you in trial” ‘Allah granted Muslims safety now?’ Umar said to me, ‘I wondered about the same thing and asked the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, about it and he said,

 “A gift that Allah has bestowed on you, so accept His gift.” (Muslim 1:478)

Abu Bakr Ibn Abi Shaybah recorded that Abu Hanzalah Al-Hadha said, “I asked Ibn Umar about the Qasr prayer and he said, ‘It consists of two Rakahs. ‘I said, what about Allah’s statement, “if you fear that the disbelievers may put you in trial (attack you)?” ‘We are safe now.’ He said, ‘This is the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah.” (Ibn Abi Shaybah 2:447)

Al-Bukhari recorded that Anas said, “We went out with the Messenger of Allah from Al-Madinah to Makkah; he used to pray two Rakahs until we went back to Al-Madinah.” When he was asked how long they remained in Makkah, he said, “We remained in Makkah for ten days.” (Fath Al-Bari 2:653)  Imam Ahmad recorded that Harithah bin Wahb Al-Khuzai said, “I prayed behind the Prophet for the Zuhr and Asr prayers in Mina, when the people were numerous and very safe, and he prayed two Rakahs.” (Ahmad 4:306)

Al-Bukhari’s narration of this Hadith reads, “The Prophet led us in the prayer at Mina during the peace period by offering two Rakahs.” (Fath Al-Bari 2:655)

 

 {102. When you (O Messenger Muhammad) are among them, and lead them in Salah, let one party of them stand up [in prayer] with you, taking their arms with them; when they finish their prostrations, let them take their positions in the rear and let the other party come up which have not yet prayed, and let them pray with you, taking all the precautions and bearing arms. Those who disbelieve wish, if you were negligent of your arms and your baggage, to attack you in a single rush, but there is no sin on you if you put away your arms because of the inconvenience of rain or because you are ill, but take every precaution for yourselves. Verily, Allah has prepared a humiliating torment for the disbelievers.}

The Description of The Fear Prayer

The Fear prayer has different forms, for the enemy is sometimes in the direction of the Qiblah and sometimes in another direction. The Fear prayer consists sometimes of four Rakahs, three Rakahs, as for Maghrib, and sometimes two Rakah like Fajr and prayer during travel. The Fear prayer is sometimes prayed in congregation, but when the battle is raging, congregational prayer may not be possible. In this case, they pray each by himself, facing the Qiblah or otherwise, riding or on foot. In this situation, they are allowed to walk and fight, all the while performing the acts of the prayer.

Some scholars said that in the latter case, they pray only one Rakah, for Ibn Abbas narrated, “By the words of your Prophet, Allah has ordained the prayer of four Rakah while residing, two Rakah during travel, and one Rakah during fear.” (Muslim: 687)  Abu Asim Al-Abadi mentioned that Muhammad bin Nasr Al-Marwazi said the Fajr prayer also becomes one Rakah during fear. This is also the opinion of Ibn Hazm. Ishaq bin Rahwayh said, “When a battle is raging, one Rakah during which you nod your head is sufficient for you. If you are unable, then one prostration is sufficient, because the prostration is remembrance of Allah.”

The Reason behind Revealing this Ayah

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Ayyash Az-Zuraqi said, “We were with the Messenger of Allah in the area of Usfan (a well known place near Makkah), when the idolators met us under the command of Khalid bin Al-Walid, and they were between us and the Qiblah. The Messenger of Allah led us in Zuhr prayer, and the idolators said, ‘They were busy with something during which we had a chance to attack them.’ They then said, ‘Next, there will come a prayer (Asr) that is dearer to them than their children and themselves.’ However, Jibril came down with these Ayat between the prayers of Zuhr and Asr, “When you (O Messenger Muhammad ) are among them, and lead them in Salah (prayer)”.

When the time for prayer came, the Messenger of Allah commanded Muslims to hold their weapons and he made us stand in two lines behind him. When he bowed, we all bowed behind him. When he raised his head, we all raised our heads. The Prophet then prostrated with the line that was behind him while the rest stood in guard. When they finished with the prostration and stood up, the rest sat and performed prostration, while those who performed it stood up in guard after the two lines exchanged position. The Prophet then bowed and they all bowed after him, then raised their heads after he raised his head. Then the Prophet performed prostration with the line that was behind him, while the rest stood in guard. When those who made prostration sat, the rest prostrated. The Prophet then performed the Taslim and ended the prayer. The Messenger of Allah performed this prayer twice, once in Usfan and once in the land of Banu Sulaym.” (Ahmad 4:59-60)

Al-Bukhari recorded that Ibn Abbas said, “Once the Prophet led the Fear prayer and the people stood behind him. He said Allahu-Akbar and the people said the same. He bowed and some of them bowed. Then he prostrated and they also prostrated. Then he stood for the second Rakah and those who had prayed the first Rakah left and guarded their brothers. The second party joined him and performed bowing and prostration with him. All the people were in prayer, but they were guarding one another during the prayer.” (Fath Al-Bari 2:502)

Imam Ahmad recorded that Jabir bin Abdullah said that the Messenger of Allah led them in the Fear prayer. A group of them stood before him and a group behind him. The Prophet led those who were behind him with one Rakah and two prostrations. They then moved to the position of those who did not pray, while the others stood in their place, and the Messenger of Allah performed one Rakah and two prostrations and then said the Salam. Therefore, the Prophet prayed two Rakah while they prayed one. (Ahmad 3:298)

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Salim said that his father said, “When you (O Messenger Muhammad) are among them, and lead them in Salah (prayer)” refers to the Fear prayer. The Messenger of Allah led one group and prayed one Rakah, while the second group faced the enemy. Then the second group that faced the enemy came and Allah’s Messenger led them, praying one Rakah, and then said the Salam. Each of the two groups then stood up and prayed one more Rakah each (while the other group stood in guard).” (Ad-Durr Al-Manthur 2:375)

As for the command to hold the weapons during the Fear prayer, a group of scholars said that it is obligatory according to the Ayah. What testifies to this is that Allah said; “But there is no sin on you if you put away your arms because of the inconvenience of rain or because you are ill, but take every precaution for yourselves” meaning, so that when necessary, you will be able to get to your weapons easily, “Verily, Allah has prepared a humiliating torment for the disbelievers”.

 {103. When you have finished the Salah, remember Allah standing, sitting down, and on your sides, but when you are free from danger, perform the Salah. Verily, Salah is kitaban on the believers at fixed hours.

104. And don’t be weak in the pursuit of the enemy; if you are suffering (hardships) then surely they (too) are suffering (hardships) as you are suffering, but you have a hope from Allah (for the reward, i.e. Paradise) that for which they hope not; and Allah is Ever All-Knowing, All-Wise.}

The Order for Ample Remembrance After the Fear Prayer

Allah commands Dhikr after finishing the Fear prayer, in particular, even though such Dhikr is encouraged after finishing other types of prayer in general. In the case of Fear prayer, Dhikr is encouraged even more because the pillars of the prayer are diminished since they move about while performing it, etc., unlike other prayers. Allah said about the Sacred Months, “so wrong not yourselves therein”, even though injustice is prohibited all year long. However, injustice is particularly outlawed during the Sacred Months due to their sanctity and honor. So Allah’s statement, “When you have finished Salah, remember Allah standing, sitting down, and on your sides” means, in all conditions, “But when you are free from danger perform the Salah” when you are safe, tranquil and fear subsides, “perform the Salah” by performing it as you were commanded; fulfilling its obligations, with humbleness, completing the bowing and prostration positions etc. Allah’s statement, “Verily, the Salah is Kitaban on the believers at fixed hours.” means, enjoined, as Ibn Abbas stated. Ibn Abbas also said, “The prayer has a fixed time, just as the case with Hajj.” (At-Tabari 9:169)

The Encouragement to Pursue the Enemy Despite Injuries

Allah’s statement, “And don’t be weak in the pursuit of the enemy” means, do not weaken your resolve in pursuit of your enemy. Rather, pursue them vigorously, fight them and be wary of them. “if you are suffering then surely they are suffering as you are suffering” meaning, just as you suffer from injuries and death, the same happens to the enemy. In another Ayah, Allah said, “If you suffer a harm, be sure a similar harm has struck the others”. Allah then said, “but you have a hope from Allah that for which they hope not” meaning, you and they are equal regarding the injuries and pain that you suffer from. However, you hope for Allah’s reward, victory and aid, just as He has promised you in His Book and by the words of His Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. Surely, Allah’s promise is true. On the other hand, your enemies do not have hope for any of this. So, it is you, not they, who should be eager to fight so that you establish the Word of Allah and raise it high.  “And Allah is Ever All-Knowing, All-Wise” means, He is most knowledgeable and wise in all what He decides, decrees, wills and acts on concerning various worldly and religious ordainments, and He is worthy of praise in all conditions.

 

{105. Surely, We have sent down to you (O Muhammad) the Book in truth that you might judge between men by that which Allah has shown you, so be not a pleader for the treacherous.

106. And seek the forgiveness of Allah, certainly, Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

107. And argue not on behalf of those who deceive themselves. Verily, Allah does not like anyone who is a betrayer, sinner.

108. They may hide (their crimes) from men, but they cannot hide (them) from Allah; for He is with them (by His knowledge), when they plot by night in words that He does not approve. And Allah ever encompasses what they do.

109. Lo! You are those who have argued for them in the life of this world, but who will argue for them on the Day of Resurrection against Allah, or who will then be their defender?}

The Necessity of Referring to What Allah has Revealed for Judgement

Allah says to His Messenger, Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, “Surely, We have sent down to you the Book in truth” meaning, it truly came from Allah and its narrations and commandments are true. Allah then said, “that you might judge between men by that which Allah has shown you” In the Two Sahihs, it is recorded that Zaynab bint Umm Salamah said that Umm Salamah said that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, heard the noise of disputing people close to the door of his room, and he went out to them saying,

”Verily, I am only human and I judge based on what I hear. Some of you might be more eloquent in presenting his case than others, so that I judge in his favor. If I judge in one’s favour concerning the right of another Muslim, then it is a piece of the Fire. So let one take it or leave it.” (Fath Al-Bari 5:128)

Imam Ahmad recorded that Umm Salamah said, “Two men from the Ansar came to the Messenger of Allah with a dispute regarding some old inheritance, but they did not have evidence. The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“You bring your disputes to me, but I am only human. Some of you might be more persuasive in their arguments than others. I only judge between you according to what I hear. Therefore, whomever I judge in his favour and give him a part of his brother’s right, let him not take it, for it is a part of the Fire that I am giving him and it will be tied around his neck on the Day of Resurrection.”

The two men cried and each one of them said, ‘I forfeit my right to my brother.’ The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

”Since you said that, then go and divide the inheritance, and try to be just in your division. Then draw lots, and each one of you should forgive his brother thereafter (regardless of who got the best share).” (Ahmad 6:320)

Allah’s statement, “They may hide (their crimes) from men, but they cannot hide (them) from Allah” chastises the hypocrites because they hide their evil works from the people so that they will not criticize them. Yet, the hypocrites disclose this evil with Allah, Who has perfect watch over their secrets and knows what is in their hearts. This is why Allah said, “for He is with them (by His knowledge), when they plot by night in words that He does not approve. And Allah ever encompasses what they do” threatening and warning them.

Allah then said,

“Lo! You are those who have argued for them in the life of this world” meaning, suppose these people gain the verdict from the rulers in their favor in this life, since the rulers judge according to what is apparent to them. However, what will their condition be on the Day of Resurrection before Allah, Who knows the secret and what is even more hidden Who will be his advocate on that Day Verily, none will support them that Day. Hence, Allah’s statement , “or who will then be their defender?”

 

 {110. And whoever does evil or wrongs himself but afterwards seeks Allah’s forgiveness, he will find Allah Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

111. And whoever earns sin, he earns it only against himself. And Allah is Ever All-Knowing, All-Wise.

112. And whoever earns a fault or a sin and then blames it on someone innocent, he has indeed burdened himself with falsehood and a manifest sin.

113. Had not the grace of Allah and His mercy been upon you, a party of them would certainly have made a decision to mislead you, but they mislead none except their own selves, and no harm can they do to you in the least. Allah has sent down to you the Book, and the Hikmah, and taught you that which you knew not. And ever great is the grace of Allah unto you.}

The Encouragement to Seek Allah’s Forgiveness, and Warning those who Falsely Accuse Innocent People

Allah emphasizes His generosity and kindness, in that He forgives whoever repents to Him from whatever evil they commit. Allah said, “And whoever does evil or wrongs himself but afterwards seeks Allah’s forgiveness, he will find Allah Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” Ali bin Abi Talhah said that Ibn Abbas commented about this Ayah, “Allah informs His servants of His forgiveness, forbearing generosity and expansive mercy. So whoever commits a sin, whether minor or major, “but afterwards seeks Allah’s forgiveness, he will find Allah Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful” even if his sins were greater than the heavens, the earth and the mountains.” (At-Tabari 9:195)

Imam Ahmad recorded that Ali said, “Whenever I hear anything from the Messenger of Allah, Allah benefits me with whatever He wills of that. Abu Bakr told me, and Abu Bakr has said the truth, that the Messenger of Allah said,

”No Muslim commits a sin and then performs ablution, prays two Rakahs and begs Allah for forgiveness for that sin, but He forgives him.”

He then recited these two Ayat, “And whoever does evil or wrongs himself”, and, “And those who, when they have committed Fahishah or wronged themselves with evil.” (Ahmad 1:8)

Allah’s statement, “And whoever earns sin, he earns it only against himself.” is similar to His statement, “And no bearer of burdens shall bear the burden of another”. So no one will avail anyone else. Rather, every soul, and none else, shall carry its own burden. This is why Allah said, “And Allah is Ever All-Knowing, All-Wise.” meaning, this occurs due to His knowledge, wisdom, fairness and mercy. “and taught you that which you knew not”, before this revelation was sent down to you. Similarly, Allah said, “And thus We have sent to you (O Muhammad) a Ruh (a revelation, and a mercy) of Our command. You knew not what is the Book” unt il the end of the Surah. Allah said, “And you were not expecting that the Book (this Qur’an) would be sent down to you, but it is a mercy from your Lord”. So Allah said; “And ever great is the grace of Allah unto you (O Muhammad).”

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