Allah Almighty states in the Holy Quran:

وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّکُمْ بِشَیۡءٍ مِّنَ الْخَوۡفِ وَالْجُوۡعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِّنَ الۡاَمۡوٰلِ وَالۡاَنۡفُسِ وَالثَّمَرٰتِ ؕ وَبَشِّرِ الصّٰبِرِیۡنَ﴿۱۵۵﴾ۙ

  And We shall definitely put you to test with something of fear and hunger and with some loss of wealth and lives and fruits; and give glad tidings to the patient.

 (Al-Baqarah 2, Verse 155)

وَعَسٰۤی اَنۡ تَکْرَہُوۡا شَیْـًٔا وَّہُوَ خَیۡرٌ لَّکُمْۚ وَعَسٰۤی اَنۡ تُحِبُّوۡا شَیْـًٔا وَّہُوَ شَرٌّ لَّکُمْؕ

  A it may happen that anything may be disliked by you and that may be in your favour, and it may happen that anything may be liked by you and that may not be in your favour.

(Al-Baqarah 2, Verse 216)

Hadeeth:

وَعَنْ أنَسٍ – رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ – قَالَ: قَالَ رَسُوْلُ اللهِ – صلى الله عليه وسلم: إِذَا أَرَادَ اللهُ بِعَبْدِهِ الْخَيْرَ عَجَّلَ لَهُ الْعُقُوْبَةَ فِيْ الدُّنْيَا، وَإِذَا أَرَادَ اللهُ بِعَبْدِهِ الشَّرَّ أمْسَكَ عَنْهُ بِذَنْبِهِ حَتَّى يُوَافِيَ بِهِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ.

وَقالَ النَّبِيُّ – صلى الله عليه وسلم: «إنَّ عِظَمَ الجَزَاءِ مَعَ عِظَمِ الْبَلاَءِ، وَإنَّ اللهَ تَعَالَى إِذَا أَحَبَّ قَوْمًا ابْتَلاَهُمْ، فَمَنْ رَضِيَ فَلَهُ الرِّضَا، وَمَنْ سَخِطَ فَلَهُ السُّخْطُ».

 رواه الترمذي

Sayyiduna Anas – may Allah be pleased with him – reported:  The Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – has stated:

When Allah intends good for his slave, He hastens his punishment in the world. And when He intends bad for His slave, He withholds his consequences from him until he appears before Him on the Day of Judgement.

The Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – has stated:

Indeed great reward comes with great trial. And indeed, when Allah loves a people He subjects them to trials, so whoever is content, then for him is pleasure, and whoever is discontent, then for him is wrath.

(Jame’ Tirmidhi)

Commentary:

Mulla ‘Ali Qari – may Allah be pleased with him – writes the following passages in the commentary of this Hadeeth:

When Allah Almighty intends good to a servant He punishes him for his sins in the world, for the torment of the hereafter is very severe and perpetual.

When He intends bad for a servant then he postpones the punishment of his sins and delivers it in full in hereafter.

When Allah Almighty loves a people, he puts them through tests.  These trials are a sign of His friendship.  He makes his Awliya undergo such difficulties.  When one is pleased on these difficulties attains the Pleasure of Allah.

(Mirqaat under Hadeeth No. 1566)

Allah’s Pleasure Precedes the Pleasure of the Servant:

Allama Teebi – may Allah be pleased with him – has commented:

It denotes that the Pleasure of Allah supersedes the pleasure of His servants, so Allah is pleased first and then the servant hence the statement of Allah Almighty as follows:

رَضِیَ اللہُ عَنْہُمْ وَ رَضُوۡا عَنْہُ ؕ

 Allah is well pleased with them and they are pleased with Allah.

(Al-Bayyinah 98, Verse 8)

(Sharh al-Teebi under Hadeeth No. 1566)

Lofty Station Attained through Trials

The Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – has stated:

There is a special station of a servant in the Court of Allah Almighty.  When it is possible for him to reach that station striving through his actions then Allah Almighty makes him undergo such situations which he dislikes until he reaches that station of his.

(Sahih Ibn Hibban Hadeeth No. 2897)

قَالَ إِبْرَاهِيمُ بْنُ مَهْدِيٍّ السُّلَمِيُّ – عَنْ أَبِيهِ، عَنْ جَدِّهِ، وَكَانَتْ، لَهُ صُحْبَةٌ مِنْ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ سَمِعْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ ‏‏ إِنَّ الْعَبْدَ إِذَا سَبَقَتْ لَهُ مِنَ اللَّهِ مَنْزِلَةٌ لَمْ يَبْلُغْهَا بِعَمَلِهِ ابْتَلاَهُ اللَّهُ فِي جَسَدِهِ أَوْ فِي مَالِهِ أَوْ فِي وَلَدِهِ ‏‏ ‏.

‏ قَالَ أَبُو دَاوُدَ زَادَ ابْنُ نُفَيْلٍ ‏‏ ثُمَّ صَبَّرَهُ عَلَى ذَلِكَ ‏‏ ‏.‏ ثُمَّ اتَّفَقَا ‏‏ حَتَّى يُبْلِغَهُ الْمَنْزِلَةَ الَّتِي سَبَقَتْ لَهُ مِنَ اللَّهِ تَعَالَى ‏‏ ‏.‏

Sayyiduna Ibrahim ibn Mahdi al-Sulami said:

He reported on his father’s authority, who said his grandfather reported: He was a Companion of the Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him.  He said: I heard the Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – say:

When Allah has previously decreed for a servant a rank which he has not attained by his action, He afflicts him in his body, or his property or his children.

Abu Dawud said: Ibn Nufail added in his version: “He then enables him to endure that.” The agreed version goes: “So that He may bring him to the rank previously decreed from him by Allah.”

(Sunan Abi Dawood Hadeeth 3090)

Lesson:

  • We must all strive for the pleasure of Allah through good and bad times by enduring any situation thrown at us with patience and perseverance.
  • If we are tested, it could mean that Allah Almighty ordains to take us to our Decreed station in His Court.
  • This Hadith shows that, for a Muslim, trials are also a blessing in this world because his sins are forgiven in proportion to the trials he has to face and his reward is increased with the Will of Allah.
  • We, as Muslims, should always be patient and contented in the event of trial because without these qualities he will not have the privilege associated with them.
  • On the other hand, his impatience would increase his sins even further.  We ask Allah’s refuge!
  • May we die striving to seek the Pleasure of Allah. Ameen!