Don’t Ever Lose Hope- Allah Is All Merciful.
قُلۡ يَـٰعِبَادِىَ ٱلَّذِينَ أَسۡرَفُواْ عَلَىٰٓ أَنفُسِهِمۡ لَا تَقۡنَطُواْ مِن رَّحۡمَةِ ٱللَّهِۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ يَغۡفِرُ ٱلذُّنُوبَ جَمِيعًاۚ إِنَّهُ ۥ هُوَ ٱلۡغَفُورُ ٱلرَّحِيمُ
“O My slaves who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allah, verily Allah forgives all sins. Truly, He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Surah Az-Zumar 39:53)
Umar Ibn al-Khattab (RA) relates that some prisoners were brought before Rasulullah (SAW) and amongst them was a woman who was frantically searching for someone in the crowd. When she found a baby amongst the prisoners, she took it in her arms, cradled it next to her chest and suckled it. Rasulullah (SAW) said: “Do you think that this woman would ever throw her child into the fire?” We said: “By Allah, Never!” Rasulullah (SAW) said: “Allah is more merciful to His believing servants than that mother could ever be to her child.” (Al-Bukhari, Muslim)
Abu Hurairah (RA) relates Rasulullah (SAW) said: “Indeed, before Allah created the creation, He decreed for Himself, ‘Indeed My Mercy prevails over My Anger.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)
There are numerous Ahadith and Quranic verses give hope to the sinful believer in the Mercy of Allah for forgiveness of his sins, for Allah is full of forgiveness, pardon and covering mistakes of people, in spite of the people’s persistence upon transgression:
يَـٰبَنِىَّ ٱذۡهَبُواْ فَتَحَسَّسُواْ مِن يُوسُفَ وَأَخِيهِ وَلَا تَاْيۡـَٔسُواْ مِن رَّوۡحِ ٱللَّهِۖ إِنَّهُ ۥ لَا يَاْيۡـَٔسُ مِن رَّوۡحِ ٱللَّهِ إِلَّا ٱلۡقَوۡمُ ٱلۡكَـٰفِرُونَ
“And never give up hope of Allah’s Mercy. Certainly, no one despairs of Allah’s Mercy, except the people who disbelieve.” (Surah Yusuf 12:87)
However, it is important to correctly understand the concept of hope in the Mercy of Allah, for some who are mistaken in this issue rely completely upon the hope that Allah will forgive their sins without even intending to refrain from evil deeds.
Hope in the Mercy of Allah should be accompanied by regret and remorse of the heart upon the sins committed, sincerity, hastening in repentance and avoiding sins as is clearly manifest from the following verses of the Qur’an. Allah says:
وَمَن يَعۡمَلۡ سُوٓءًا أَوۡ يَظۡلِمۡ نَفۡسَهُ ۥ ثُمَّ يَسۡتَغۡفِرِ ٱللَّهَ يَجِدِ ٱللَّهَ غَفُورً۬ا رَّحِيمً۬ا
“And whosoever does evil or wrongs himself but afterwards seeks Allah’s forgiveness, he will find Allah Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Surah an-Nisa 4:110)
يَـٰٓأَيُّہَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ تُوبُوٓاْ إِلَى ٱللَّهِ تَوۡبَةً۬ نَّصُوحًا
“O you who believe! Turn to Allah with sincere repentance.” (Surah Tahrim 66:8)
وَٱلَّذِينَ إِذَا فَعَلُواْ فَـٰحِشَةً أَوۡ ظَلَمُوٓاْ أَنفُسَہُمۡ ذَكَرُواْ ٱللَّهَ فَٱسۡتَغۡفَرُواْ لِذُنُوبِهِمۡ وَمَن يَغۡفِرُ ٱلذُّنُوبَ إِلَّا ٱللَّهُ وَلَمۡ يُصِرُّواْ عَلَىٰ مَا فَعَلُواْ وَهُمۡ يَعۡلَمُونَ
“And those who, when they have committed Fahisah (illegal acts) or wronged themselves with evil, remember Allah and ask forgiveness for their sins; – and none can forgive sins but Allah. And do not persist in what (wrong) they have done, while they know.” (Surah al-Imran 3:135)
وَلَيۡسَتِ ٱلتَّوۡبَةُ لِلَّذِينَ يَعۡمَلُونَ ٱلسَّيِّـَٔاتِ حَتَّىٰٓ إِذَا حَضَرَ أَحَدَهُمُ ٱلۡمَوۡتُ قَالَ إِنِّى تُبۡتُ ٱلۡـَٔـٰنَ
“And of no effect is the repentance of those who continue to do evil until death faces one of them and he says: ‘Now I repent.’” (Surah an-Nisa 4:18)
The example of a slave’s hope in Allah’s Mercy and Forgiveness can be explained by the example of a farmer. If the farmer searches for fertile soil, then sows it with good and healthy seeds, giving to the seeds what they need at the appropriate time, removing from around them the weeds and anything else that may hinder or ruin their growth and then hopes in Allah for His Favours with regards to keeping away violent storms and other harmful elements, until the seeds have fully ripened and grown – then this type of expectation can truly be described as hope. However, if the farmer sows the seeds in hard and barren soil, too high up for water to reach it, and he does not take care or protect the seed from harm, and expects a good harvest, then this expectation is not called hope, it is only wishful thinking.
Similarly, if the servant sows the seeds of Imaan (faith), and waters them with acts of obedience to Allah, and protects himself from committing sins and seeks Allah’s Forgiveness, then he is truly hoping in the Mercy of Allah.
Yahya Ibn Mu’aadh said: “In my view, the worst kind of self-delusion is to greatly sin, yet hope for forgiveness without feeling any regret; and to hope to draw close to Allah – the Most High – without obedience to Him; and to await the fruits of Paradise, by planting the seeds for Hell-Fire; and to seek the abode of the obedient ones, by doing acts of disobedience; and to expect a reward, without doing any worthy action; and to hope in Allah – the Mighty and Majestic – after overstepping the bounds.” “You hope for salvation but do not tread its path. A ship never sails upon dry land.”