So Allah Forgave Him

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

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It from the rights of a Muslim that he is rendered what is due to him, and indeed the hand that gives is better than the hand that takes. However, there are situations where it’s not becoming of a Muslim to uncessarily demand and goad what is due to him of debt from one who is genuinely struggling to pay and is impoverished to do so. A person in such a state should be accorded grace and a rescheduled opportunity by the lender for repayment. If is becomes clear the indebted is in no position to repay what is owed, then the injunction of the Qur’an states: It is better to cancel debt

This act of immense kindness and mercy brings with it, relieving a believer from burden and grief, as well as becoming a sadaqah of immeasurable reward for the canceller of debt. Often times, we like to see everything in black and white and what is rightfully owed and what is rightfully due. However benevolence and empathy are ingredients many of us have need to refine and improve upon; and the consequence of which leads to something that money can rarely buy.

Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Prophet ﷺ said:

كان تاجرٌ يداين الناس، فإذا رأى معسراً قال لفتيانه: تجاوزوا عنه، لعل الله أن يتجاوز عنا، فتجاوز الله عنه
كَانَ تَاجِرٌ يُدَايِنُ النَّاسَ، فَإِذَا رَأَى مُعْسِرًا قَالَ لِفِتْيَانِهِ تَجَاوَزُوا عَنْهُ، لَعَلَّ اللَّهَ أَنْ يَتَجَاوَزَ عَنَّا، فَتَجَاوَزَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُ

“There was a merchant who used to lend the people, and whenever his debtor was in straitened circumstances, he would say to his employees: ‘Forgive him so that Allah may forgive us.’ So, Allah forgave him.” [1]

From the many lessons and points of benefits one can take from this narration, the following three will suffice:

1. Commenting on this narration, Ibn Battal [1] mentioned the words of Mahlab ibn Abi Safrah:

فيه أن الله يغفر الذنوب بأقل حسنة توجد للعبد، وذلك -والله أعلم- إذا خلصت النية فيها لله تعالى- وأن يريد بها وجهه، وابتغاء مرضاته فهو أكرم الأكرمين، ولا يجوز أن يخيِّب عبده من رحمته

“In this case (of cancelling debt) Allah forgives sins with minimum amount of goodness accorded to the servant (of Allah). Therefore, and Allah knows Best, if the intention is sincerely for the sake of Allah Most High, and he intends (by his action) seeking His Face and for His Pleasure, then He is the most Generous of those who show generosity. It then becomes disallowed for Him to disappoint His servant from his Mercy.”

فضيلة التجاوز عن المعسرين، وأن ذلك مما يجلب مرضاة رب العالمين

2. The virtue of overcoming (and abstaining) from being insolvent, and that this brings the satisfaction of the Rabb of the Worlds.

أن الجزاء من جنس العمل، لأن هذا التاجر كان يقول لفتيانه: إذا رأيتم معسراً فتجاوزوا عنه لعل الله أن يتجاوز عنا، فكان الغلام يفعل ذلك، فلقي الله فجازاه عزوجل بمثل ما يجازي به الناس.. فتجاوز عنه

3. The reward for this type of action, because the merchant was saying to his two employees: If you see an insolvent then forgive him so that Allah may forgive us. They followed orders and did so, Allah forgave him just as he (the merchant) forgave the people. [3]

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References:

[1] Al-Bukhari, 2078, 3480; Muslim, 1526
[2] Ibn Battal, ‘Sharh Saheeh al-Bukhari’ (2/616)
[3] Taken from the

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