The Orchards of Love – Part Forty – Two

Never Lose Hope in the Mercy of Allah Ta‘ala

During the Battle of Uhud, one of the painful tragedies suffered by Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) was the martyrdom of his beloved uncle, Hazrat Hamzah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu). The person responsible for killing Hazrat Hamzah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was none other than Hazrat Wahshi bin Harb (radhiyallahu ‘anhu). At that time, he was not a Muslim, but Allah Ta‘ala later on blessed him with Imaan and the honour of becoming a Sahaabi. The incident of his accepting Islam is as follows:

After Allah Ta‘ala blessed Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) and the Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum) with the conquest of Makkah Mukarramah, Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) fled to Taa’if, as he feared that the Muslims would seize him and kill him in retaliation for him killing Hazrat Hamzah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu).

Thereafter, when the people of Taa’if wished to embrace Islam, they sent a delegation to Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam). At that time, Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) also accompanied this delegation and came to Makkah Mukarramah. When he came before Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) asked him, “Are you Wahshi?” Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) replied, “Yes, I am Wahshi.”

Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) then said, “Are you the person who killed Hazrat Hamzah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu)?” Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) responded, “Yes, the matter (regarding me killing your uncle) is exactly as you have heard (i.e. I am the person who killed your uncle).”

Despite Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) killing his uncle, Hazrat Hamzah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu), Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) still had great concern for his salvation. This great concern was out of the deep love that Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) had for every ummati.  Hence, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) immediately invited Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) to embrace Islam. Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) wished to embrace Islam, however he had a few reservations in his heart which was preventing him from embracing Islam, and hence he replied, “O Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)! How can I embrace Islam, whereas the Qur’aan Majeed mentions that the one who commits murder, engages in shirk or indulges in zina will not be forgiven and will be sent to Jahannum? Allah Ta‘ala says:

وَ الَّذِیۡنَ لَا یَدۡعُوۡنَ مَعَ اللّٰہِ  اِلٰـہًا اٰخَرَ  وَ لَا یَقۡتُلُوۡنَ النَّفۡسَ الَّتِیۡ حَرَّمَ اللّٰہُ  اِلَّا بِالۡحَقِّ وَ لَا یَزۡنُوۡنَ ۚ وَ مَنۡ یَّفۡعَلۡ  ذٰلِکَ  یَلۡقَ  اَثَامًا ﴿ۙ۶۸﴾ یُّضٰعَفۡ لَہُ  الۡعَذَابُ یَوۡمَ  الۡقِیٰمَۃِ وَ یَخۡلُدۡ   فِیۡہٖ   مُہَانًا

And those who do not call unto any other deity with Allah, and do not kill a person whom Allah has given sanctity, except rightfully, nor do they commit zina; and whoever does this (i.e. commits these sins of shirk, murder and zina), he will meet the punishment (in Jahannum). The punishment (in Jahannum) will be doubled for him on the Day of Qiyaamah and he will remain therein humiliated. (Surah Furqaan v. 68-69)

Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) then said, “As for myself, then I have committed all these major sins, so do you find any chance for me gaining forgiveness?” Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) remained silent and did not reply, until Allah Ta‘ala revealed the following verse of the Qur’aan Majeed:

اِلَّا مَنۡ تَابَ وَ اٰمَنَ وَ عَمِلَ عَمَلًا صَالِحًا فَاُولٰٓئِکَ یُبَدِّلُ اللّٰہُ سَیِّاٰتِہِمۡ  حَسَنٰتٍ ؕ وَ کَانَ  اللّٰہُ  غَفُوۡرًا  رَّحِیۡمًا ﴿۷۰﴾

(The one who commits these sins of shirk, murder and zina will not be forgiven and will be punished in Jahannum,) unless he repents, brings imaan, and carries out righteous deeds, for Allah Ta‘ala will transform the evil deeds of such people into good deeds, and Allah Ta‘ala is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful. (Surah Furqaan v. 70)

On hearing this verse, Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) replied, “O Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)! Though in this verse, Allah Ta‘ala has promised to forgive those people who have committed these sins which I have committed, however their forgiveness is conditional. The condition is that they should repent, bring imaan and carry out righteous deeds in their lives. How do I know whether I will manage to fulfil this condition (and hence gain the forgiveness of Allah Ta‘ala)?”

Allah Ta‘ala then revealed the following verse:

اِنَّ اللّٰہَ لَا یَغۡفِرُ اَنۡ یُّشۡرَکَ بِہٖ وَ یَغۡفِرُ  مَا دُوۡنَ ذٰلِکَ لِمَنۡ یَّشَآءُ

Indeed, Allah Ta‘ala does not forgive that partners be ascribed to Him, but He forgives all other sins for whomsoever He wishes. (Surah Nisaa v. 48)

Hearing this verse, Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) responded, “O Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)! I see that in this verse, Allah Ta‘ala mentions that He will forgive the sins of those whom He wishes. However, I don’t know whether Allah Ta‘ala will wish to forgive me or not. Is there anything else that you can tell me (that will give me hope in me being forgiven)?”

Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) remained silent and did not reply, until Allah Ta‘ala revealed the following verse of the Qur’aan Majeed:

قُلۡ یٰعِبَادِیَ  الَّذِیۡنَ  اَسۡرَفُوۡا عَلٰۤی اَنۡفُسِہِمۡ  لَا تَقۡنَطُوۡا مِنۡ رَّحۡمَۃِ اللّٰہِ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ یَغۡفِرُ الذُّنُوۡبَ جَمِیۡعًا ؕ اِنَّہٗ  ہُوَ  الۡغَفُوۡرُ  الرَّحِیۡمُ ﴿۵۳﴾

“O My servants who have transgressed against their souls! Despair not of the mercy of Allah Ta‘ala. Allah Ta‘ala forgives all sins, for He is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Surah Zumar v. 53)

When Hazrat Wahshi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) heard this verse, he exclaimed, “Yes! This verse (is the verse which has given me hope of me gaining forgiveness)!” Saying this, he immediately embraced Islam.

The Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum) then enquired from Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), “O Rasul of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)! In this verse, Allah Ta‘ala has promised to forgive those who turn to Him in repentance. Does this promise also apply to us?”

Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) replied, “This promise applies to all the Muslims (who turn to Allah Ta‘ala in repentance).” (Saheeh Bukhaari #4072, Tabraani – Majma‘uz Zawaaid #11314, Usdul Ghaabah 5/409, Tafseer Qurtubi 15/268)

From this incident, we see the great love that Allah Ta‘ala has for His servants. Allah Ta‘ala loves to forgive His servants. No matter how far a person may be from deen, and how abundant and evil his sins may be, if he turns to Allah Ta‘ala in sincere repentance and makes a firm resolve to reform his condition, then Allah Ta‘ala will definitely forgive him.

It is reported in the Hadith Qudsi that Allah Ta‘ala says, “O son of Aadam (‘alaihis salaam)! So long as you turn unto Me (in repentance) and have hope in My forgiveness, I will forgive your sins, and I do not care (there is no one to question my authority). O son of Aadam (‘alaihis salaam)! Even if your sins reach the clouds of the sky and you then turn to Me, seeking My forgiveness, I will forgive you and I do not care (there is no one to question my authority). O son of Aadam (‘alaihis salaam)! If you come to Me with the whole earth full of sins and you meet Me in a condition that you do not ascribe any partners to Me, I will come to you with the whole earth full of forgiveness.” (Sunan Tirmizi #3540)

Thus, a believer should never become despondent and lose hope in the mercy of Allah Ta‘ala. So long as there is life, there is hope. May Allah Ta‘ala bless us all with the taufeeq of constantly turning to Him in repentance – Aameen.

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