The Reality of Sins

25th February 2008

Allah (swt) says: “(O Mankind!) Leave sin, apparent and hidden. Verily, those who commit sin will get due recompense for that which they commit.” (Holy Quran, 6:120).

In the above verse, Allah (SWT) has ordered that Mankind should abstain from all types of sin. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir)
It is further mentioned, that no action should be performed which is against the pleasure of Allah (SWT). Nor should there be any doubts regarding the Deen of Allah(SWT), otherwise it will be regarded as a sins. (Tafsir Uthmani)
Sins are those actions which are performed against the criteria of the Holy Quran and Sunnah.

The example of a sin, is like that of a cancer. When cancer inflicts a body part, that part of the body is singled out and may need to be removed completely from the body. This is done to prevent the fatal spread of the cancer throughout the whole body. Therefore, whenever a sin is committed, the believer should immediately resort to repentance(Tauba). The Prophet (SAW) said: Refrain from sins which you may consider as minor, as you will be held accountable for them. (Ibn Majah and Baihaqi)

The Reasons For Sinning
Whenever the individual thinks that he or she is not being watched. Because of this mindset, it becomes very easy for that person to commit a sin. Remember! Allah (SWT) has highlighted this point in the Holy Quran: “Allah, is verily always watching over them.” (Quran, 89:14)

Whenever the individual thinks that no-one is aware of their actions. Remember! Allah (SWT) has already answered this in the Quran. “Allah knows the fraud of the eyes and all that the breasts conceal..” (Holy Quran, 40:19)

Whenever the individual thinks that no-one is beside/near them. When this thought comes to mind then it becomes a means of opening the doors of sin. Remember! Allah (SWT) has already answered this is the Holy Quran: “Allah is with you wherever you may be. And Allah is all-seer of what you do.” (Holy Quran, 57:4)

Whenever the individual thinks that they cannot be held accountable by anyone, a sense of pride, this type of thinking increases the zeal in a person to commit sins. Remember! Allah (SWT) has already answered this is the Holy Quran: “Verily, the seizing of Allah (of the wrongdoers) is very painful and severe.” (Holy Quran, 11:102)

What the Scholars of the Ummah say about sins
Hafiz Ibn Qayim (rahimahullaah) stated: My friend! Do not look at sin in the manner of it being minor or major, look at it in the manner of the Majesty of the being whose orders you are disobeying (Allah SWT).

Ata bin Abi Riba Tabiee (RAHIMAHULLAAH) stated: Whenever there is a deficiency in sustenance that is provided by Allah to an individual, he complains of this to the people. When that same person’s book of deeds, filled with sins comes before Allah (SWT), Allah (SWT) does not complain of this individual and his actions to the angels. But, Allah (SWT) waits for the moment that he will repent for his wrongdoings.

Imam Abu Hanifa (rahimahullaah) stated: When somebody praises you, then in reality they are praising Allah (SWT).
For it is due to the Mercy of Allah (SWT) that he has kept your sins hidden from the eyes of people. If sins had a stench, then no-one would even come near you!

What is praise?!
Shaykh Zulfiqar Ahmed Naqshbandi (DB) states: When you commit a sin, you take great care of the small children that may be around, yet you have no thought of Allah Most High!? When committing a sin you close all those doors from which people may be able to see you. However, you cannot close that door from which Allah is always watching you. A Tabiee (RAH) is recorded as saying: I have experienced, that whenever I happen to disobey any order of Allah (SWT) I get the recompense of disobedience from my wife, children, servants and even the animals I own. Allah (SWT) says: Whatever of misfortune befalls you, it is because of what your hands have earned. (Holy Quran, 42:30)
When a person happens to sin, Allah (SWT) prepares 4 witnesses for him

1. The Earth is made a witness on the Day of Qiyamah to the sin perpetrated on its back: “That day (The Earth) will declare its information (good and bad that happened over it)” (Holy Quran 99:4)

2. The body parts of an individual will bear witness against the individual on the Day of Qiyamah: “This day (Qiyamah) we shall seal up their mouths, and their hands will speak to us, and their legs will bear witness to what they used to earn.” (Holy Quran, 36:65)

3. The Angels will bear witness on the Day of Qiyamah: “Verily, appointed over you are angels to watch over you, honourable and writing down your deeds, they know all that you do.” (Holy Quran, 82:10-12)

4. The Book of Deeds will bear witness to their actions on the Day of Qiyamah: “ And when the pages of the book of deeds (of every person) shall be laid open.” (Holy Quran, 81:10) One day Umar bin Khattab (RA) was reading this verse of the Holy Quran and the reality of the verse dawned upon him, he lost consciousness and was bed-ridden for several days.

Many of the pious predecessors, used to read the following verse and cry all night saying “O Allah, what will be our condition be on that day?!” “The Day when all the secrets will be examined (as to their truth).” (Holy Quran, 86:9)
The remedy for sins is only in sincere reptenance
Allah (SWT) says: “O you who Believe! Turn to Allah with sincere repentance …” (Holy Quran, 66:8)

Mufti Muhammed Shafi (RAH) stated: the meaning of a sincere repentance, is that an individual should feel guilt, remorse and embarrassment over their past sins. Together with this, they should make a firm intention not to repeat the same sin. If however, the sins which are being repented over are amongst the ‘Rights of Allah’, it should then be performed/made up with full account, quickly as possible through qaza (salat, fasting, zakat etc). If the past sin is from amongst the ‘Rights of the Creation’ then forgiveness must be sought from the wronged persons. If money/wealth was wrongfully taken, it should be returned to the rightful owner.(Khutabhaat) If we perform our repentance in
this manner then Allah (SWT) says: “Except those who repent and believe and do righteous deeds; for those Allah will change their sins into good deeds, And Allah is Ever Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Holy Quran, 25:70)

May Allah (SWT) forgive all our sins through his Mercy and include us amongst his pious sevants. Ameen!

Mufti Yusuf Danka