Hadith 37. Generosity of Allah Part A

hadith37arabic1

 

On the authority of Ibn Abbas (RadhiyAllahu ‘anhuma), from the Messenger of Allah (SallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasallam), from what he has related from his Lord is:

“Verily Allah has written down the good deeds and the evil deeds”, and then explained it [by saying]: “Whosoever intended to perform a good deed, but did not do it, then Allah writes it down with Himself as a complete good deed. And if he intended to perform it and did perform it, then Allah writes it down with Himself as from ten good deeds up to seven hundred fold, up to many times multiplied. And if he intended to perform an evil deed, but did not do it, then Allah writes it down with Himself as a complete good deed. And if he intended it [i.e., the evil deed] and then performed it, then Allah writes it down as one evil deed.”

[Reported by Bukhari & Muslim]

 

Brief Commentary

  • This hadith encourages people to have great hope in the grace of Allah, and realise His great justice
  • It encourages to do good deeds and be observant of Allah and points to Allah’s great blessings and generosity and also points to Allah’s immense ability to do what He wants
  • Although the hadith literally says “Allah has written”, it actually means Allah has recorded. Some say it refers to the sacred tablet
  • People are of four types when it comes to good deeds and sins:
    • Someone who thought about doing a good deed but didn’t do it
    • Someone who thought about doing a good deed and did it
    • Someone who thought about doing a sin but didn’t do it
    • Someone who thought about doing a sin and did it
  • Types of thought:
    • هاجس: Fleeting thought which passes very quickly. This carries no consequences in the shari’ah, whether it was for a good deed or a sin
    • خاطر: Similar to هاجس, but with some consideration given to it. This takes the same ruling as هاجس above
    • حديث النفس: Contemplating when or how to do the action. This carries the same ruling as هاجس above, though scholars differed on it. The prophet (SallaAllahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said, “Allah has overlooked for my nation what their souls contemplate over, so long as they do not act on it or speak of it” [Reported by Bukhari & Muslim]
    • هم: Intends to do the action and takes initial steps in doing so, though with some hesitation. This is what is being referred to in this hadith
    • عزيمة: You are 100% sure you want to do it, and what is stopping you is an external impediment e.g. someone forcing you not to do it, or you are unable to do it anymore. This too is what is being referred to in this hadith with regards to good deeds only. For sins, the hadith seems to only be referring to هم  above
  • Some scholars say that for you to be rewarded for your intention, there must be an impediment stopping you from carrying out the action, but others say by merely intending to do so and not doing so without an impediment, you will still be rewarded. Ibn Hajar said, “This is because intending to do good is a reason for carrying out the action, and intending to do good is good because it is from the actions of the heart”
  • Levels when it comes to receiving rewards just for intentions:
    • You are prevented by an external impediment:  Reward is very great
    • You didn’t do it without any external influences stopping you so  e.g. you were lazy. You will still be rewarded by the will of Allah, but the reward isn’t as great as the one above
    • You change intention to a bad one. You are in sin for doing the bad intention, and no reward for initial good intention.
  • Allah loves for us to do righteous deeds such that He rewards us just for intending to do them
  • Allah said, “with Him” which is an indication of its nobility
  • Allah said “complete” to remove any misconceptions that the reward will not be complete

 

Benefits and Action points:

  • Be observant of Allah’s watching over you
  • In terms of good actions, both  هم and عزيمة are considered, but in terms of sins, only هم is considered
  • Train yourself to always think about and intend to do good deeds
  • Allah will aid you if we want to do good deeds
  • What prevents you from developing further and changing to the better is not having high aspirations and wanting to do good, so change this and have high aspirations

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