Benefits and Virtues of Surah 9 At-Tawbah

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9. At-Tawbah

9.1 Narrated Sa`id bin Jubair:

I asked Ibn `Abbas about Surat Al-Tauba, and he said, “Surat Al-Tauba? It is exposure (of all the evils of the infidels and the hypocrites). And it continued revealing (that the oft-repeated expression): ‘…and of them …and of them.’ till they started thinking that none would be left unmentioned therein.”

Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 6, Book 60, Hadith 404

9.2 Narrated Zaid bin Thabit:

Abu Bakr sent for me, so I collected the Qur’an till I found the last part of Surat-at-Tauba with Abi Khuza`ima Al-Ansari and did not find it with anybody else. (The Verses are): — ‘Verily, there has come to you an Apostle (Muhammad) from amongst yourselves..(till the end of Surat Bara’a) (i.e., at- Tauba).’ (9.128-129)

Sahih al-Bukhari 7425

9.3 Ibn ‘Abbas mentioned

The words of the Almighty, “When one or both of them reach old age with you, do not say ‘Ugh!’ to them out of irritation and do not be harsh with them but speak to them with gentleness and generosity. Take them under your wing, out of mercy, with due humility and say:’Lord, show mercy to them as they did in looking after me when I was small.” (17:23-24)

He said, “This was abrogated in Surat at-Tawba:

‘It is not right for the Prophet and those who have iman to ask forgiveness for the mushrikun even if they are close relatives after it has become clear to them that they are the Companions of the Blazing Fire.’ (9:113)”

Al-Adab Al-Mufrad 23

9.4 Narrated Humaid bin `Abdur Rahman:

Abu Huraira said, “Abu Bakr sent me in that Hajj in which he was the chief of the pilgrims along with the announcers whom he sent on the Day of Nahr to announce at Mina: “No pagan shall perform Hajj after this year, and none shall perform the Tawaf around the Ka`ba in a naked state.” Humaid added: That the Prophet (ﷺ) sent `Ali bin Abi Talib (after Abu Bakr) and ordered him to recite aloud in public Surat-Baraa. Abu Huraira added, “So `Ali, along with us, recited Bara’a (loudly) before the people at Mina on the Day of Nahr and announced “No pagan shall perform Hajj after this year and none shall perform the Tawaf around the Ka`ba in a naked state.”

Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 6, Book 60, Hadith 179

9.5 Abu al-Darda’ said:

If anyone says seven times morning and evening;

﴾ حسبي الله لا إله إلا هو عليه توكلت وهو رب العرش العظيم ﴿

“Allah sufficeth me: there is no god but He; on him is my trust- he, the Lord of the Throne (of glory) Supreme” (9:129),

Allah will be sufficient for him against anything which grieves him, whether he is true or false in (repeating) them.

Sunan Abi Dawud 5081

9.6 Narrated Al-Bara:

The last Sura which was revealed in full was Baraa (i.e. Sura-at-Tauba), and the last Sura (i.e. part of a Sura) which was revealed was the last Verses of Sura-an-Nisa’:– “They ask you for a legal decision. Say: Allah directs (thus) About those who have No descendants or ascendants As heirs.” (4.177)

Sahih al-Bukhari 4364 

9.7 It was narrated from Abu Sa’eed that

The Messenger of Allah said: “If you see a man frequenting the mosques, then bear witness to his faith. Allah says: ‘The mosques of Allah shall be maintained only by those who believe in Allah and the Last Day. [At-Taubah: 18]'”

Sunan Ibn Majah 802 

9.8 Sa’id b. Jubair reported:

I said to Ibn ‘Abbas about Sura Tauba, whereupon he said: As for Sura Tauba, it is meant to humiliate (the non-believers and the hypocrites). There is constantly revealed in it (the pronoun) minhum (of them) and minhom (of them, i. e. such is the condition of some of them) till they (the Muslims) thought that none would be left unmentioned out of them who would not be blamed (for one fault or the other). I again said: What about Sura Anfal? He said: It pertains to the Battle of Badr. I again asked him about Sura al-Hashr. He said: It was revealed in connection with (the tribe) of Banu Nadir.

Sahih Muslim 3031

9.9 Narrated Zaid bin Thabit:

Abu Bakr As-Siddiq sent for me when the people of Yamama had been killed (i.e., a number of the Prophet’s Companions who fought against Musailima). (I went to him) and found `Umar bin Al- Khattab sitting with him. Abu Bakr then said (to me), “`Umar has come to me and said: “Casualties were heavy among the Qurra’ of the Qur’an (i.e. those who knew the Qur’an by heart) on the day of the Battle of Yamama, and I am afraid that more heavy casualties may take place among the Qurra’ on other battlefields, whereby a large part of the Qur’an may be lost. Therefore I suggest, you (Abu Bakr) order that the Qur’an be collected.” I said to `Umar, “How can you do something which Allah’s Apostle did not do?” `Umar said, “By Allah, that is a good project.” `Umar kept on urging me to accept his proposal till Allah opened my chest for it and I began to realize the good in the idea which `Umar had realized.” Then Abu Bakr said (to me). ‘You are a wise young man and we do not have any suspicion about you, and you used to write the Divine Inspiration for Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ). So you should search for (the fragmentary scripts of) the Qur’an and collect it in one book.” By Allah If they had ordered me to shift one of the mountains, it would not have been heavier for me than this ordering me to collect the Qur’an. Then I said to Abu Bakr, “How will you do something which Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) did not do?” Abu Bakr replied, “By Allah, it is a good project.” Abu Bakr kept on urging me to accept his idea until Allah opened my chest for what He had opened the chests of Abu Bakr and `Umar. So I started looking for the Qur’an and collecting it from (what was written on) palme stalks, thin white stones and also from the men who knew it by heart, till I found the last Verse of Surat at-Tauba (Repentance) with Abi Khuzaima Al-Ansari, and I did not find it with anybody other than him. The Verse is: ‘Verily there has come unto you an Apostle (Muhammad) from amongst yourselves. It grieves him that you should receive any injury or difficulty..(till the end of Surat-Baraa’ (at-Tauba) (9.128-129). Then the complete manuscripts (copy) of the Qur’an remained with Abu Bakr till he died, then with `Umar till the end of his life, and then with Hafsa, the daughter of `Umar.

Sahih al-Bukhari 4986

9.10 It was narrated from Ibn Abi Sa’eed Al-Khudri that his father said:

“Two men argued about the Masjid which was founded on piety from the first day. [1] One man said that it was the Masjid of Quba’, and the other said that it was the Masjid of the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ). The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: ‘It is this Masjid of mine.'” [1] At-Tawbah 9:108.

Sunan an-Nasa’i 697

9.11 Narrated Abu Hurairah

that the Prophet (ﷺ) said: “This Ayah was revealed about the people of Quba: In it are men who love to purify themselves. And Allah loves those who make themselves pure (9:108).” He said: “They used water to perform Istinja so this Ayah was revealed about them.”

Jami` at-Tirmidhi Vol. 5, Book 44, Hadith 3100

9.12 Narrated Ibn ‘Umar:

“‘Abdullah bin ‘Abdullah bin Ubayy came to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) when his father died, and said: ‘Give me your shirt to shroud him in and perform the Salat upon him, and seek forgiveness for him.’ So he (ﷺ) gave him his shirt, and said: ‘When you are finished then inform me.’ So when he wanted to perform the Salat, ‘Umar tugged at him and said: ‘Has not Allah prohibited that you perform Salat over the hypocrites?’ He said: ‘I have been given the choice between two: ‘Whether you seek forgiveness for them or you do not seek forgiveness for them…. (9:80)’ So he performed the Salat for him. Then Allah revealed: ‘And never pray for any of them who dies, nor stand at his grave… (9:84)’ So he abandoned praying for them.”

Jami` at-Tirmidhi Vol. 5, Book 44, Hadith 3098

9.13 Narrated Thawban:

“When (the following) was revealed: And those who hoard up gold and silver… (9:34)” He said: “We were with the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) during one of his journeys, so some of his Companions said: (This) has been revealed about gold and silver, if we knew which wealth was better then we would use it. So he (ﷺ) said: ‘The most virtuous of it is a remembering tongue, a grateful heart, and a believing wife that helps him with his faith.'”

Jami` at-Tirmidhi Vol. 5, Book 44, Hadith 3094

9.14 Narrated ‘Adi bin Hatim:

“I came to the Prophet (ﷺ) while I had a cross of gold around my neck. He said: ‘O ‘Adi! Remove this idol from yourself!’ And I heard him reciting from Surah Bara’ah: They took their rabbis and monks as lords besides Allah (9:31). He said: ‘As for them, they did not worship them, but when they made something lawful for them, they considered it lawful, and when they made something unlawful for them, they considered it unlawful.'”

Jami` at-Tirmidhi Vol. 5, Book 44, Hadith 3095 

9.15 It was narrated that Jabir said:

“The leader of the hypocrites in Al- Madinah died, and left instructions that the Prophet (ﷺ) should offer the funeral prayer for him and shroud him in his shirt. He offered the funeral prayer for him and shrouded him in his shirt, and stood by his grave. Then Allah revealed the words: ‘And never pray (the funeral prayer) for any of them (hypocrites) who dies, nor stand at his grave.” [9:84]

Sunan Ibn Majah Vol. 1, Book 6, Hadith 1524

9.16 Narrated Khalid bin Aslam:

We went out with ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar and a bedouin said (to ‘Abdullah), “Tell me about Allah’s saying: “And those who hoard up gold and silver (Al-Kanz – money, gold, silver etc., the Zakat of which has not been paid) and spend it not in the Way of Allah (V.9:34).” Ibn ‘Umar said, “Whoever hoarded them and did not pay the Zakat thereof, then woe to him. But these holy Verses were revealed before the Verses of Zakat. So when the Verses of Zakat were revealed, Allah made Zakat a purifier of the property.”

Sahih al-Bukhari 1404

9.17 Abu Mas’ud ‘Uqbah bin ‘Amr Al-Ansari (May Allah be pleased with him) said:

When the Ayah enjoining Sadaqah (charity) was revealed,* we used to carry loads on our backs to earn something that we could give away in charity. One person presented a considerable amount for charity and the hypocrites said: “He has done it to show off.” Another one gave away a few Sa’ of dates and they said: “Allah does not stand in need of this person’s dates”. Thereupon, it was revealed:

“Those who defame such of the believers who give charity (in Allah’s Cause) voluntarily, and such who could not find to give charity (in Allah’s Cause) except what is available to them…” (9:79)

Riyad as-Salihin Book 1, Hadith 110

9.18 Narrated Ibn ‘Abbas:

“I heard ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab saying: ‘When ‘Abdullah bin Ubayy died, the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) was called to perform the funeral prayer over him. The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) came to him, and when he stood over him, about to perform the prayer, he turned until he was standing at his chest. I said: “O Messenger of Allah! (You pray) for Allah’s enemy ‘Abdullah bin Ubayy, who on this day said this and that” – mentioning different days. He said: “The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) was smiling until I had said too much to him and he said: ‘Leave me O ‘Umar! Indeed I have been given the choice, so I chose. I was told: Whether you ask forgiveness for them, or do not ask for forgiveness for them. Even though you ask for their forgiveness seventy times, Allah will not forgive them (9:80). If I knew that were I to ask more than seventy times that he would be forgiven, then I would do so.” He said: “Then he performed the Salat for him and walked with him (his funeral procession) and he stood at his grave until it was finished. I was amazed at myself and my daring to talk like that to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), while Allah and His Messenger (ﷺ) know better. But by Allah! It was not long until these two Ayat were revealed: ‘And never pray for any of them who dies nor stand at his grave… (9:84) until the end of the Ayah. He said: “So afterwards the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) did not perform the Salat for a hypocrite, nor would he stand at his grave until Allah took him.”

Jami` at-Tirmidhi Vol. 5, Book 44, Hadith 3097

9. 19 Narrated ‘Abdur-Rahman bin Ka’b bin Malik:

from his father who said: “I did not remain behind from any of the battles the Prophet (ﷺ) fought in, until the battle of Tabuk, except for Badr. And the Prophet (ﷺ) did not scold anyone who remained behind from Badr, because he only went out to look for the caravan. The Quraish came out to help their caravan, so they met without an appointment as Allah the Mighty and Sublime, said. By my life, people consider the most honorable of battles of the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) to be that of Badr, but I would not have liked to attend it instead of my oath of allegiance on the night of Al-‘Aqabah when we took a covenant for Islam. Afterwards, I did not stay behind from the Prophet (ﷺ) until the battle of Tabuk, and it was the last of the battles he fought. The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) informed the people of the departure” – and he mentioned the Hadith in its entirety, and said – “So I went to the Prophet (ﷺ) and he was sitting in the Masjid, surrounded by the Muslims. He was beaming like the moon beams. When he was happy about a matter he would beam. So I came and said in front of him. He said: ‘Receive glad tidings – O Ka’b bin Malik – of the best day you have seen since your mother bore you!’ So I said: ‘O Prophet of Allah! Is it from Allah or from you?’ He said: ‘From Allah.’ Then he recited these Ayat: Allah has forgiven the Prophet, the Muhajirin, and the Ansar who followed him in the time of distress, after the hearts of a party of them had nearly deviated, but He accepted their repentance. Certainly, He is unto them full of Kindness, Most Merciful (9:117). [until he reached: Verily, Allah is the One Who accepts repentance, Most Merciful (9:118).] He said: “And it was about us that (the following) was revealed as well: Have Taqwa of Allah, and be with those who are true (9:119).” He said: “O Prophet of Allah! Part of my repentance is to not say but the truth, and give up all of my wealth as charity for Allah and His Messenger.’ So the Prophet (ﷺ) said: ‘Keep some of your wealth for yourself, for indeed that is better for you.’ I said: ‘So I will keep my share from Al-Khaibar.'” He said: “So after my acceptance of Islam, Allah did not grant me a greater favor than when I and my two companions told the truth to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and we were not among the liars to be ruined like the others were ruined. Indeed I hope that Allah will not test anyone over telling the truth as he tested me. I did not resort to a lie ever since then, and I hope that Allah will protect me regarding what remains to come.”

Jami` at-Tirmidhi Vol. 5, Book 44, Hadith 3102

9.20 Narrated Az-Zuhri:

“From ‘Ubaid bin As-Sabbaq, that Zaid bin Thabit narrated to him, he said: ‘Abu Bakr As-Siddiq sent for me – (regarding) those killed at Al-Yamamah – and ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab was with him. He (Abu Bakr) said: “‘Umar came to me and said: The fighting inflicted many casualties among the reciters of the Qur’an on the Day of Al-Yamamah, and I fear that there will be more casualties among the reciters in other parts of the land, such that much of the Qur’an may be lost. In my view, you should order that the Qur’an be collected.'” Abu Bakr said to ‘Umar: “How can I do something which was not done my the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ)?” ‘Umar said: ‘By Allah! It is something good.’ ‘Umar continued trying to convince me until Allah opened up my chest to that which He had opened the chest of ‘Umar, and I saw it as he saw it.” Zaid said: ‘Abu Bakr said: “You are a young wise man, and we have no suspicions of you. You used to write down the Revelation for the Messenger of Allah as the Qur’an was revealed.” He (Zaid) said: ‘By Allah! If they had ordered to move one of the mountains it would have been lighter on me than that.’ He said: ‘I said: “How will you do something which was not done by the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ)?” Abu Bakr said: “By Allah! It is something good.” Abu Bakr and ‘Umar continued trying to convince me, until Allah opened up my chest for that, just as He had opened their chests, the chest of Abu Bakr and the chest of ‘Umar. So I began searching for Qur’anic material from parchments, leaf stalks of date-palms and Al-Likhaf – meaning stones – and the chests of men. I found the end of Surah Bara’ah with Khuzaimah bin Thabit: Verily, there has come to you a Messenger from among yourselves. It grieves him that you should receive any injury or difficulty. He is eager for you; for the believers (he is) full of pity, kind, and merciful. But if they turn away, say: “Allah is sufficient for me. There is no god but He, in Him I put my trust, and He is the Lord of the Mighty Throne (9:128 & 129).'”

Jami` at-Tirmidhi Vol. 5, Book 44, Hadith 3103

9.21 Narrated Malik bin Aus:

While I was at home, the sun rose high and it got hot. Suddenly the messenger of `Umar bin Al- Khattab came to me and said, “The chief of the believers has sent for you.” So, I went along with him till I entered the place where `Umar was sitting on a bedstead made of date-palm leaves and covered with no mattress, and he was leaning over a leather pillow. I greeted him and sat down. He said, “O Mali! Some persons of your people who have families came to me and I have ordered that a gift should be given to them, so take it and distribute it among them.” I said, “O chief of the believers! I wish that you order someone else to do it.” He said, “O man! Take it.” While I was sitting there with him, his doorman Yarfa’ came saying, “`Uthman, `Abdur-Rahman bin `Auf, Az-Zubair and Sa`d bin Abi Waqqas are asking your permission (to see you); may I admit them?” `Umar said, “Yes”, So they were admitted and they came in, greeted him, and sat down. After a while Yarfa’ came again and said, “May I admit `Ali and `Abbas?” `Umar said, “yes.” So, they were admitted and they came in and greeted (him) and sat down. Then `Abbas said, “O chief of the believers! Judge between me and this (i.e. `Ali).” They had a dispute regarding the property of Bani An-Nadir which Allah had given to His Apostle as Fai. The group (i.e. `Uthman and his companions) said, “O chief of the believers! Judge between them and relieve both of them front each other.” `Umar said, “Be patient! I beseech you by Allah by Whose Permission the Heaven and the Earth exist, do you know that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, ‘Our (i.e. prophets’) property will not be inherited, and whatever we leave, is Sadaqa (to be used for charity),’ and Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) meant himself (by saying “we”)?” The group said, “He said so.” `Umar then turned to `Ali and `Abbas and said, “I beseech you by Allah, do you know that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said so?” They replied, ” He said so.” `Umar then said, “So, I will talk to you about this matter. Allah bestowed on His Apostle with a special favor of something of this Fai (booty) which he gave to nobody else.” `Umar then recited the Holy Verses: “What Allah bestowed as (Fai) Booty on his Apostle (Muhammad) from them — for this you made no expedition with either cavalry or camelry: But Allah gives power to His Apostles over whomever He will ‘And Allah is able to do all things.” 9:6) `Umar added “So this property was especially given to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ), but, by Allah, neither did he take possession of it and leave your, nor did he favor himself with it to your exclusion, but he gave it to all of you and distributed it amongst you till this property remained out of it. Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) used to spend the yearly expenses of his family out of this property and used to keep the rest of its revenue to be spent on Allah ‘s Cause. Allah ‘s Apostle kept on doing this during all his lifetime. I ask you by Allah do you know this?” They replies in the affirmative. `Umar then said to `Ali and `Abbas. “I ask you by Allah, do you know this?” `Umar added, “When Allah had taken His Prophet unto Him, ‘Abu Bakr said, ‘I am the successor of Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) so, Abu Bakr took over that property and managed it in the same way as Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) used to do, and Allah knows that he was true, pious and rightlyguided, and he was a follower of what was right. Then Allah took Abu Bakr unto Him and I became Abu Bakr’s successor, and I kept that property in my possession for the first two years of my Caliphate, managing it in the same way as Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) used to do and as Abu Bakr used to do, and Allah knows that I have been true, pious, rightly guided, and a follower of what is right. Now you both (i.e. ‘Ah and `Abbas) came to talk to me, bearing the same claim and presenting the same case; you, `Abbas, came to me asking for your share from your nephew’s property, and this man, i.e. `Ali, came to me asking for his wife’s share from her father’s property. I told you both that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, ‘Our (prophets’) properties are not to be inherited, but what we leave is Sadaqa (to be used for charity).’ When I thought it right that I should hand over this property to you, I said to you, ‘I am ready to hand over this property to you if you wish, on the condition that you would take Allah’s Pledge and Convention that you would manage it in the same way as Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) used to, and as Abu Bakr used to do, and as I have done since I was in charge of it.’ So, both of you said (to me), ‘Hand it over to us,’ and on that condition I handed it over to you. So, I ask you by Allah, did I hand it over to them on this condition?” The group aid, “Yes.” Then `Umar faced `Ali and `Abbas saying, “I ask you by Allah, did I hand it over to you on this condition?” They said, “Yes. ” He said, ” Do you want now to give a different decision? By Allah, by Whose Leave both the Heaven and the Earth exist, I will never give any decision other than that (I have already given). And if you are unable to manage it, then return it to me, and I will do the job on your behalf.”

Sahih al-Bukhari 3094

9.22 Abdullah bin Ka’b, who served as the guide of Ka’b bin Malik (May Allah be pleased with him) when he became blind, narrated:

I heard Ka’b bin Malik (May Allah be pleased with him) narrating the story of his remaining behind instead of joining Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) when he left for the battle of Tabuk. Ka’b said: “I accompanied Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) in every expedition which he undertook excepting the battle of Tabuk and the battle of Badr. As for the battle of Badr, nobody was blamed for remaining behind as Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and the Muslims, when they set out, had in mind only to intercept the caravan of the Quraish. Allah made them confront their enemies unexpectedly. I had the honour of being with Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) on the night of ‘Aqabah when we pledged our allegiance to Islam and it was dearer to me than participating in the battle of Badr, although Badr was more well-known among the people than that. And this is the account of my staying behind from the battle of Tabuk. I never had better means and more favourable circumstances than at the time of this expedition. And by Allah, I had never before possessed two riding-camels as I did during the time of this expedition. Whenever Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) decided to go on a campaign, he would not disclose his real destination till the last moment (of departure). But on this expedition, he set out in extremely hot weather; the journey was long and the terrain was waterless desert; and he had to face a strong army, so he informed the Muslims about the actual position so that they should make full preparation for the campaign. And the Muslims who accompanied Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) at that time were in large number but no proper record of them was maintained.” Ka’b (further) said: “Few were the persons who chose to remain absent believing that they could easily hide themselves (and thus remain undetected) unless Revelation from Allah, the Exalted, and Glorious (revealed relating to them). And Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) set out on this expedition when the fruit were ripe and their shade was sought. I had a weakness for them and it was during this season that Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and the Muslims made preparations. I also would set out in the morning to make preparations along with them but would come back having done nothing and said to myself: ‘I have means enough (to make preparations) as soon as I like’. And I went on doing this (postponing my preparations) till the time of departure came and it was in the morning that Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) set out along with the Muslims, but I had made no preparations. I would go early in the morning and come back, but with no decision. I went on doing so until they (the Muslims) hastened and covered a good deal of distance. Then I wished to march on and join them. Would that I had done that! But perhaps it was not destined for me. After the departure of Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) whenever I went out, I was grieved to find no good example to follow but confirmed hypocrites or weak people whom Allah had exempted (from marching forth for Jihad). Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) made no mention of me until he reached Tabuk. While he was sitting with the people in Tabuk, he said, ‘What happened to Ka’b bin Malik?’ A person from Banu Salimah said: “O Messenger of Allah, the (beauty) of his cloak and an appreciation of his finery have detained him.’ Upon this Mu’adh bin Jabal (MatAllah be pleased with him) admonished him and said to Messenger of Allah (ﷺ): “By Allah, we know nothing about him but good.’ Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), however, kept quiet. At that time he (the Prophet (ﷺ)) saw a person dressed in white and said, ‘Be Abu Khaithamah.’ And was Abu Khaithamah Al- Ansari was the person who had contributed a Sa’ of dates and was ridiculed by the hypocrites.” Ka’b bin Malik further said: “When the news reached me that Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) was on his way back from Tabuk, I was greatly distressed. I thought of fabricating an excuse and asked myself how I would save myself from his anger the next day. In this connection, I sought the counsels of every prudent member of my family. When I was told that Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) was about to arrive, all the wicked ideas vanished (from my mind) and I came to the conclusion that nothing but the truth could save me. So I decided to tell him the truth. It was in the morning that Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) arrived in Al-Madinah. It was his habit that whenever he came back from a journey, he would first go to the mosque and perform two Rak’ah (of optional prayer) and would then sit with the people. When he sat, those who had remained behind him began to put forward their excuses and take an oath before him. They were more than eighty in number. Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) accepted their excuses on the very face of them and accepted their allegiance and sought forgiveness for them and left their insights to Allah, until I appeared before him. I greeted him and he smiled and there was a tinge of anger in that. He then said to me, ‘Come forward’. I went forward and I sat in front of him. He said to me, ‘What kept you back? Could you not afford to go in for a ride?’ I said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, by Allah, if I were to sit before anybody else, a man of the world, I would have definitely saved myself from his anger on one pretext or the other and I have a gifted skill in argumentation, but, by Allah, I am fully aware that if I were to put forward before you a lame excuse to please you, Allah would definitely provoke your wrath upon me. In case, I speak the truth, you may be angry with me, but I hope that Allah would be pleased with me (and accept my repentance). By Allah, there is no valid excuse for me. By Allah, I never possessed so good means, and I never had such favourable conditions for me as I had when I stayed behind.’ Thereupon, Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, ‘This man spoke the truth, so get up (and wait) until Allah gives a decision about you.’ I left and some people of Banu Salimah followed me. They said to me, ‘By Allah, we do not know that you committed a sin before. You, however, showed inability to put forward an excuse before Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) like those who stayed behind him. It would have been enough for the forgiveness of your sin that Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) would have sought forgiveness for you.’ By Allah, they kept on reproaching me until I thought of going back to Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and retract my confession. Then I said to them, ‘Has anyone else met the same fate?’ They said, ‘Yes, two persons have met the same fate. They made the same statement as you did and the same verdict was delivered in their case.’ I asked, ‘Who are they?’ They said, ‘Murarah bin Ar-Rabi’ Al-‘Amri and Hilal bin Umaiyyah Al- Waqifi.’ They mentioned these two pious men who had taken part in the battle of Badr and there was an example for me in them. I was confirmed in my original resolve. Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) prohibited the Muslims to talk to the three of us from amongst those who had stayed behind. The people began to avoid us and their attitude towards us changed and it seemed as if the whole atmosphere had turned against us, and it was in fact the same atmosphere of which I was fully aware and in which I had lived (for a fairly long time). We spent fifty nights in this very state and my two friends confined themselves within their houses and spent (most of their) time weeping. As I was the youngest and the strongest, I would leave my house, attend the congregational Salat, move about in the bazaars, but none would speak to me. I would come to Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) as he sat amongst (people) after the Salat, greet him and would ask myself whether or not his lips moved in response to my greetings. Then I would perform Salat near him and look at him stealthily. When I finish my Salat, he would look at me and when I would cast a glance at him he would turn away his eyes from me. When the harsh treatment of the Muslims to me continued for a (considerable) length of time, I walked and I climbed upon the wall of the garden of Abu Qatadah, who was my cousin, and I had a great love for him. I greeted him but, by Allah, he did not answer to my greeting. I said to him, ‘O Abu Qatadah, I adjure you in the Name of Allah, are you not aware that I love Allah and His Messenger (ﷺ)?’ I asked him the same question again but he remained silent. I again adjured him, whereupon he said, ‘Allah and His Messenger (ﷺ) know better.’ My eyes were filled with tears, and I came back climbing down the wall.

As I was walking in the bazaars of Al-Madinah, a man from the Syrian peasants, who had come to sell food grains in Al-Madinah, asked people to direct him to Ka’b bin Malik. People pointed towards me. He came to me and delivered a letter from the King of Ghassan, and as I was a scribe, I read that letter whose purport was: ‘It has been conveyed to us that your friend (the Prophet (ﷺ)) was treating you harshly. Allah has not created you for a place where you are to be degraded and where you cannot find your right place; so come to us and we shall receive you graciously.’ As I read that letter I said: ‘This is too a trial,’ so I put it to fire in an oven. When forty days had elapsed and Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) received no Revelation, there came to me a messenger of the Messenger of Allah and said, ‘Verily, Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) has commanded you to keep away from your wife.’ I said, ‘Should I divorce her or what else should I do?’ He said, ‘No, but only keep away from her and don’t have sexual contact with her.’ The same message was sent to my companions. So, I said to my wife: ‘You better go to your parents and stay there with them until Allah gives the decision in my case.’ The wife of Hilal bin Umaiyyah came to Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and said: ‘O Messenger of Allah, Hilal bin Umaiyyah is a senile person and has no servant. Do you disapprove if I serve him?’ He said, ‘No, but don’t let him have any sexual contact with you.’ She said, ‘By Allah, he has no such desire left in him. By Allah, he has been in tears since (this calamity) struck him.’ Members of my family said to me, ‘You should have sought permission from Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) in regard to your wife. He has allowed the wife of Hilal bin Umaiyyah to serve him.’ I said, ‘I would not seek permission from Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) for I do not know what Messenger of Allah might say in response to that, as I am a young man’. It was in this state that I spent ten more nights and thus fifty days had passed since people boycotted us and gave up talking to us. After I had offered my Fajr prayer on the early morning of the fiftieth day of this boycott on the roof of one of our houses, and had sat in the very state which Allah described as: ‘The earth seemed constrained for me despite its vastness’, I heard the voice of a proclaimer from the peak of the hill Sal’ shouting at the top of his voice: ‘O Ka’b bin Malik, rejoice.’ I fell down in prostration and came to know that there was (a message of) relief for me. Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) had informed the people about the acceptance of our repentance by Allah after he had offered the Fajr prayer. So the people went on to give us glad tidings and some of them went to my companions in order to give them the glad tidings. A man spurred his horse towards me (to give the good news), and another one from the tribe of Aslam came running for the same purpose and, as he approached the mount, I received the good news which reached me before the rider did. When the one whose voice I had heard came to me to congratulate me, I took off my garments and gave them to him for the good news he brought to me. By Allah, I possessed nothing else (in the form of clothes) except these garments, at that time. Then I borrowed two garments, dressed myself and came to Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) On my way, I met groups of people who greeted me for (the acceptance of) repentance and they said: ‘Congratulations for acceptance of your repentance.’ I reached the mosque where Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) was sitting amidst people. Talhah bin ‘Ubaidullah got up and rushed towards me, shook hands with me and greeted me. By Allah, no person stood up (to greet me) from amongst the Muhajirun besides him.” Ka’b said that he never forgot (this good gesture of) Talhah. Ka’b further said: “I greeted Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) with ‘As-salamu ‘alaikum’ and his face was beaming with pleasure. He (ﷺ) said, ‘Rejoice with the best day you have ever seen since your mother gave you birth. ‘I said: ‘O Messenger of Allah! Is this (good news) from you or from Allah?’ He said, ‘No, it is from Allah.’ And it was common with Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) that when ever he was happy, his face would glow as if it were a part of the moon and it was from this that we recognized it (his delight). As I sat before him, I said, I have placed a condition upon myself that if Allah accepts my Taubah, I would give up all of my property in charity for the sake of Allah and His Messenger (ﷺ)!’ Thereupon Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, ‘Keep some property with you, as it is better for you.’ I said, ‘I shall keep with me that portion which is in Khaibar’. I added: ‘O Messenger of Allah! Verily, Allah has granted me salvation because of my truthfulness, and therefore, repentance obliges me to speak nothing but the truth as long as I am alive.” Ka’b added: “By Allah, I do not know anyone among the Muslims who has been granted truthfulness better than me since I said this to the Prophet (ﷺ). By Allah! Since the time I made a pledge of this to Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), I have never intended to tell a lie, and I hope that Allah would protect me (against telling lies) for the rest of my life. Allah, the Exalted, the Glorious, revealed these Verses:

‘Allah has forgiven the Prophet (ﷺ), the Muhajirun (Muslim Emigrants who left their homes and came to Al-Madinah) and the Ansar (Muslims of Al- Madinah) who followed him (Muhammad (ﷺ)) in the time of distress (Tabuk expedition), after the hearts of a party of them had nearly deviated (from the Right Path), but He accepted their repentance. Certainly, He is unto them full of kindness, Most Merciful. And (He did forgive also) the three who did not join [the Tabuk expedition and whose case was deferred (by the Prophet (ﷺ)) for Allah’s Decision] till for them the earth, vast as it is, was straitened and their ownselves were straitened to them, and they perceived that there is no fleeing from Allah, and no refuge but with Him. Then, He forgave them (accepted their repentance), that they might beg for His Pardon [repent (unto Him)]. Verily, Allah is the One Who forgives and accepts repentance, Most Merciful. O you who believe! Be afraid of Allah, and be with those who are true (in word and deeds).” (9:117,118).

Ka’b said: “By Allah, since Allah guided me to Islam, there has been no blessing more significant for me than this truth of mine which I spoke to Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), and if I were to tell a lie I would have been ruined as were ruined those who had told lies, for Allah described those who told lies with the worst description He ever attributed to anybody else, as He sent down the Revelation:

They will swear by Allah to you (Muslims) when you return to them, that you may turn away from them. So turn away from them. Surely, they are Rijsun [i.e., Najasun (impure) because of their evil deeds], and Hell is their dwelling place – a recompense for that which they used to earn. They (the hypocrites) swear to you (Muslims) that you may be pleased with them, but if you are pleased with them, certainly Allah is not pleased with the people who are Al- Fa’siqun (rebellious, disobedient to Allah)”. (9:95,96)

Ka’b further added: “The matter of the three of us remained pending for decision apart from the case of those who had made excuses on oath before Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and he accepted those, took fresh oaths of allegiance from them and supplicated for their forgiveness. The Prophet (ﷺ) kept our matter pending till Allah decided it. The three whose matter was deferred have been shown mercy. The reference here is not to our staying back from the expedition but to his delaying our matter and keeping it pending beyond the matter of those who made their excuses on oath which he accepted”.

Another version adds: “Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) set out for Tabuk on Thursday. He used to prefer to set out on journey on Thursday.” Another version says: “Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) used to come back from a journey in the early forenoon and went straight to the mosque where he would perform two Rak’ah prayer. Afterwards he would seat himself there”.

Riyad as-Salihin Book 1, Hadith 21

9.23 Abu Ishaq said that he heard al-Bara’ b. ‘Azib (Allah be pleased with him) say:

The last complete sura revealed (in the Holy Qur’an) is Sura Tauba (i e. al-Bara’at, ix.), and the last verse revealed is that pertaining to Kalala.

Sahih Muslim 1618 c

9.24 Abu Mas’ud reported:

We were commanded to give charity (despite the fact.) that we were coolies. Abu ‘Aqil donated half a sa’. And there came another man with more than this. The hypocrites said: Verily Allah does not stand in need of the charity of this, and the second one has done nothing but only made a show (of his charity). Then this verse was revealed.” Those who scoff at the voluntary givers of charity among the believers as well as those who cannot find anything (to give) but with their hard labour” (ix. 80). And Bishr did not utter the word Muttawwi’in.

Sahih Muslim 1018 a

9.25 ‘A’isha reported:

I heard Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) as saying: The (system) of night and day would not end until the people have taken to the worship of Lat and ‘Uzza. I said: Allah’s Messenger, I think when Allah has revealed this verse:” He it is Who has sent His Messenger with right guidance, and true religion, so that He may cause it to prevail upon all religions, though the polytheists are averse (to it)” (ix. 33), it implies that (this promise) is going to be fulfilled. Thereupon he (Allah’s Apostle) said: It would happen as Allah would like. Then Allah would send the sweet fragrant air by which everyone who has even a mustard grain of faith in Him would die and those only would survive who would have no goodness in them. And they would revert to the religion of their forefathers.

Sahih Muslim 2907 a

9.26 It has been narrated on the authority of Nu’man b. Bashir who said:

As I was (sitting) near the pulpit of the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), a man said: I do not care if, after embracing Islam, I do not do any good deed (except) distributing drinking water among the pilgrims. Another said: I do not care if, after embracing Islam, I do not do any good deed beyond maintenance service to the Sacred Mosque. Another said: Jihad in the way of Allah is better than what you have said. ‘Umar reprimanded them and said: Don’t raise your voices near the pulpit of the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) on Friday. When prayer was over, I entered (the apartment of the Holy Prophet) and asked his verdict about the matter in which they had differed. (It was upon this that) Allah, the Almighty and Exalted, revealed the Qur’anic verse:” Do you make the giving of drinking water to the pilgrims and the maintenance of the Sacred Mosque equal to (the service of those) who believe in Allah and the Last Day and strive hard in the cause of Allah. They are not equal in the sight of God. And Allah guides not the wrongdoing people” (ix. 20).

Sahih Muslim 1879 a

9.27 It is reported by Sa’id b. Musayyib who narrated it on the authority of his father (Musayyib b. Hazm) that when Abu Talib was about to die, the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) came to him and found with him Abu Jahl (‘Amr b. Hisham) and ‘Abdullah b. Abi Umayya ibn al-Mughirah. The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said:

My uncle, you just make a profession that there is no god but Allah, and I will bear testimony before Allah (of your being a believer), Abu Jahl and ‘Abdullah b. Abi Umayya addressing him said: Abu Talib, would you abandon the religion of ‘Abdul-Muttalib? The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) constantly requested him (to accept his offer), and (on the other hand) was repeated the same statement (of Abu Jahl and ‘Abdullah b. Abi Umayya) till Abu Talib gave his final decision and be stuck to the religion of ‘Abdul-Muttalib and refused to profess that there is no god but Allah. Upon this the Messenger of Allah remarked: By Allah, I will persistently beg pardon for you till I am forbidden to do so (by God), It was then that Allah, the Magnificent and the Glorious, revealed this verse: ” It is not meet for the Prophet and for those who believe that they should beg pardon for the polytheists, even though they were their kith and kin, after it had been made known to them that they were the denizens of Hell” (ix. 113) And it was said to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ): ” Verily thou canst not guide to the right path whom thou lovest. And it is Allah Who guideth whom He will, and He knoweth best who are the guided” (xxviii, 56).

Sahih Muslim 24 a

9. 28 Ibn Shihab reported that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) made an expedition to Tabuk and he (the Holy Prophet) had in his mind (the idea of threatening the) Christians of Arabia in Syria and those of Rome. Ibn Shihab (further) reported that ‘Abd al-Rahman b. ‘Abdullah b. Ka’b informed him that Abdullah b. Ka’b who served as the guide of Ka’b b. ‘Malik as he became blind that he heard Ka’b b. Malik narrate the story of his remaining behind Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) from the Battle of Tabuk. Ka’b b. Malik said:

I never remained behind Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) from any expedition which he undertook except the Battle of Tabuk and that of the Battle of Badr. So far as the Battle of Badr is concerned, nobody was blamed for remaining behind as Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and the Muslims (did not set out for attack but for waylaying) the caravan of the Quraish, but it was Allah Who made them confront their enemies without their intention (to do so). I had the honour to be with Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) on the night of ‘Aqaba when we pledged our allegiance to Islam and it was more dear to me than my participation in the Battle of Badr, although Badr was more popular amongst people as compared with that (Tabuk). And this is my story of remaining back from Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) on the occasion of the Battle of Tabuk. Never did I possess means enough and (my circumstances) more favourable than at the occasion of this expedition. And, by Allah, I had never before this expedition simultaneously in my possession two rides. Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) set out for this expedition in extremely hot season; the journey was long and the land (which he and his army had to cover) was waterless and he had to confront a large army, so he informed the Muslims about the actual situation (they had to face), so that they should adequately equip themselves for this expedition, and he also told them the destination where he intended to go. And the Muslims who accompanied Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) at that time were large in numbers but there was no proper record of them. Ka’b (further) said: Few were the persons who wanted to absent themselves, and were under the impression that they could easily conceal themselves (and thus remain undetected) until revelations from Allah, the Exalted and Glorious (descended in connection with them). And Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) set out on an expedition when the fruits were ripe and their shadows had been lengthened. I had weakness for them and it was during this season that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) made preparations and the Muslims too along with them. I also set out in the morning so that I should make preparations along with them but I came back and did nothing and said to myself: I have means enough (to make preparations) as soon as I like. And I went on doing this (postponing my preparations) until people were about to depart and it was in the morning that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) set out and the Muslims too along with him, but I made no preparations. I went early in the morning and came back, but I made no decision. I continued to do so until they (the Muslims) hastened and covered a good deal of distance. I also made up my mind to march on and to meet them. Would that I had done that but perhaps it was not destined for me. After the departure of Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) as I went out amongst people, I was shocked to find that I did not find anyone like me but people who were labelled as hypocrites or the people whom Allah granted exemption because of their incapacity and Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) took no notice of me until he had reached Tabuk. (One day as he was sitting amongst the people in Tabuk) he said: What has happened to Ka’b b. Malik? A person from Banu’ Salama said: Allah’s Messenger, the (beauty) of his cloak and his appreciation of his sides have allured him and he was thus detained. Mua’dh b. Jabal said: Woe be upon that what you contend. Allah’s Messenger, by Allah, we know nothing about him but good. Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ), however, kept quiet. It was during that time that he (the Holy Prophet) saw a person (dressed in all white (garment) shattering the illusion of eye (mirage). Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: May he be Abu Khaithama and, lo, it was Abu Khaithama al-Ansari and he was that person who contributed a sa’ of dates and was scoffed at by the hypocrites. Ka’b b. Malik farther said: When this news reached me that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) was on his way back from Tabuk I was greatly perturbed. I thought of fabricating false stories and asked myself how I would save myself from his anger on the following day. In this connection, I sought the help of every prudent man from amongst the members of my family and when it was said to me that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) was about to arrive, all the false ideas banished (from my mind) and I came to the conclusion that nothing could save me but the telling of truth, so I decided to speak the truth and it was in the morning that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) arrived (in Medina). And it was his habit that as he came back from a journey he first went to the mosque and observed two Rak’ahs of nafl prayer (as a mark of gratitude) and then sat amongst people. And as he did that, those who had remained behind him began to put forward their excuses and take an oath before him and they were more than eighty persons. Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) accepted their excuses on the very face of them and accepted their allegiance and sought forgiveness for them and left their secret (intentions) to Allah, until I presented myself to him. I greeted him and he smiled and there was a tinge of anger in that. He (the Holy Prophet) then said to me: Come forward. I went forward until I sat in front of him. He said to me: What kept you back? Could you not afford to go in for a ride? I said: Allah’s Messenger, by Allah, if I were to sit in the presence of anybody else from amongst the worldly people I would have definitely saved myself from his anger on one pretext (or the other) and I have also the knack to fall into argumentation, but, by Allah, I am fully aware of the fact that if I were to put forward before you a false excuse to please you Allah would definitely provoke your wrath upon me, and if I speak the truth you may be annoyed with me, but I hope that Allah would make its end well and, by Allah, there is no valid excuse for me. By Allah, I never possessed so good means, and I never had such favourable conditions for me as I had when I stayed behind you (failed to join the expedition). Thereupon, Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: This man told the truth, so get up until Allah gives a decision in your case. I stood up and some people of Banu’ Salama followed me in hot haste, and they said to me: By Allah, we do not know about you that you committed a sin prior to this. You, however, showed inability to put forward an excuse before Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) as those who stayed behind him have put forward excuses. It would have been enough for the forgiveness of your sin that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) would have sought forgiveness for you. By Allah, they continued to incite me until I thought of going back to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and contradict myself. Then I said to them: Has anyone else also met the same fate? They said: Yes, two persons have met the same fate as has fallen to you and they have made the sane statement as you have made, and the same verdict has been delivered in their case as it has been delivered in your case. I said: Who are they? They said: Murara b. ar-Rabi’a ‘Amiri and Hilal b. Umayya al-Waqafi. They made a mention of these two pious persons to me who had participated in the Battle of Badr and there was an example for me in them. I went away when they named these two persons. Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) forbade the Nluslims to talk with three of us from amongst those (persons) who had stayed behind him. The people began to avoid us and their attitude towards us underwent a change and it seemed as if the whole atmosphere had turned (hostile) against us and it was in fact the same atmosphere ot which I was fully aware and in which I had lived (for a fairly long time). We spent fifty nights in this very state and my two friends confined themselves withen their houses and spent (most of the) time in weeping, but as I was young and strong amongst them I got (out of my house), participated in congregational prayers, moved about in the bazar; but none spoke to me. I came to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) as he sat amongst (people) after the prayer, greeted him and asked myself whether his lips stirred in response to my greetings (or not). Then I observed prayer beside him and looked at him with stealing glances and when I attended to my prayer, he looked at me and when I cast a glance at him he turned away his eyes from me. And when the harsh treatment of the Muslims towards me extended to a (considerable) length of time, I walked until I climbed upon the wall of the garden of Abu Qatada, and he was my cousin, and I had the greatest love for him. I greeted him but, by Allah, he did not respond to my greetings. I said to him: Abu Qatada, I adjure you by Allah, arn’t you well aware of the fact that I love Allah and His Messenger (ﷺ) the most. He kept quiet. I again repeated saying: I adjure you by Allah. arn’t you well aware of the fact that I love Allah and His Messenger (ﷺ) the most. He kept quiet. I again adjured him, whereupon he said: Allah and the Messenger (ﷺ) are best aware of it. My eyes began to shed tears and I came back climbing down from the wall and as I was walking in the bazar of Medina a Nabatean from amongst the Nabateans of Syria, who had come to sell foodgrains in Medina, asked people to direct him to Ka’b b. Malik. People gave him the indication by pointing towards me. He came to me and delivered to me a letter of the King of Ghassan and as I was a scribe I read that letter and it was written like this:” Coming to my point, it has been conveyed to us that your friend (the Holy Prophet) is subjecting you to cruelty and Allah has not created you for a place where you are to be degraded and where you cannot find your right place, so you come to us that we should accord you honour. As I read that letter I said: This is also a calamity, so I burnt it in the oven. When out of the fifty days, forty days had passed and Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) received no revelation, there came the messenger of Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) to me and said: Verily, Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) has commanded you to remain separate from your wife. I said: Should I divorce her or what (else) should I do? He said: No, but only remain separate from her and don’t have sexual contact with her. The same message was sent to my companions. So I said to my wife: You better go to your parents and stay there with them until Allah gives the decision in my case. The wife of Hilal b. Umayya came to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and said: Allah’s Messenger, Hilal b. Umayya is a senile person, he has no servant. Do you disapprove of my serving him? He said: No, but don’t go near him. She said: By Allah, he has no such instinct in him. By Allah, he spends his time in weeping from that day to this day. Some of the members of my family said to me: Were you to seek permission from Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) in regard to your wife as he has granted permission to the wife of Hilal b. Umayya to serve him. I said: I would not seek permission from Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ), for I cannot say what Allah’s Apostle may say in response to seeking my permission. Moreover, I am a young man. It was in this state that I spent ten more nights and thus fifty nights had passed that (people) had observed boycott with us. It was on the morning of the fiftieth night that I observed my dawn prayer and was sitting on one of the roofs of our houses. And I was in fact sitting in that very state which Allah, the Exalted and Glorious, has described about us in these words:” Life had become hard for myself and the earth had compressed despite its vastness,” that I heard the noise of an announcer from the peak of the hill of Sal’ saying at the top of his voice: Ka’b b. Malik, there is glad tidings for you. I fell down in prostration and came to realise that there was (a message of) relief for me. Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) had informed the people of the acceptance of our repentance by Allah as he offered the dawn prayer. So the people went on to give us glad tidings and some of them went to my friends in order to give them the glad tidings and a person galloped his horse and came from the tribe of Aslam and his horse reached me more quickly than his voice. And when he came to me whose sound I heard, he gave me the glad tidings. I took off my clothes and clothed him with them because of his bringing good news to me and, by Allah, I possessed nothing else (in the form of clothes) than these two on that occasion, and I asked one to lend me two clothes and dressed myself in them. I came to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and on my way I met groups of people who greeted me because of (the acceptance of) repentance and they said: Here is a greeting for you for your repentance being accepted by Allah. (I moved on) until I came to the mosque and Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) had been sitting there amongst persons. So Talha b. ‘Ubaidullah got up and rushed towards me and he shook hands with me and greeted me and, by Allah, no person stood up (to greet me) from amongst the emigrants except he. Ka’b said that he never forgot (this good gesture of) Talha. Ka’b further said: I greeted Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) with Assalam-o-‘Alaikam and his face was glistening because of delight, and he said: Let there be glad tidings and blessings for you, the like of which (you have neither found nor you will find, as you find today) since your mother gave your birth. I said: Allah’s Messenger. is this acceptance of repentance from you or from Allah? He said: No, (it is not from ma), it is from Allah, and it was common with Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) that as he was happy his face brightened up and it looked like a part of the moon and it was from this that we recognised it (his delight). As I sat before him, I said: Allah’s Messenger, am I allowed to give in charity my wealth for Allah’s sake and for the sake of His Messenger (ﷺ)? Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: Keep some property with you as it is better for you. I said: I shall keep with me that part (of my property) which fell to my lot (on the occasion of the expedition of) Khaibar. I said: Allah’s Messenger, verily, Allah has granted me salvation because of truth and, therefore, (I think) that repentance implies that I should not speak anything but truth as long as I live. He said: By Allah, I do not know whether anyone amongst the Muslims was put to more severe trial than I by Allah because of telling the truth. And since I made a mention of this to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) up to this day I have not told any lie and, by Allah, I have decided not to tell a lie and I hope that Allah would save me (from trials) for the rest of my life and Allah, the Exalted and Glorious, revealed these verses:” Certainly, Allah has turned in Mercy to the Prophet and the emigrants and the helpers who followed him in the hour of hardship after the hearts of a part of them were about to deviate; then He turned to them in mercy. Surely, to them He is Compassionate, Merciful and (He turned in Mercy) to the three who were left behind until the earth despite its vastness became strait for them and their souls were also straitened to them.” And this revelation reached up to the (words):” O you who believe, develop God consciousness, and be with the truthful” (ix. 117-118). Ka’b said: By Allah, since Allah directed me to Islam there has been no blessing more significant for me than this truth of mine which I spoke to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and if I were to tell a lie I would have been ruined as were ruined those who told lies, for in regard to those who told lies Allah used harshest words used for anyone as He descended revelation (and the words of Allah are):” They will swear by Allah to you when you return to them so that you may leave them alone. So leave them alone. Surely, they are unclean and their resort is Hell, recompense for what they earned. They will swear to you that you may be pleased with them but if you are pleased with them, yet surely Allah is not pleased with the transgressing people” (ix. 95-96). K’ab said that the matter of us three persons was deferred as compared with those who took an oath in the presence of Allahs Messenger (ﷺ) and he accepted their allegiance and sought forgiveness for them and Allah did not give any decision in regard to us. It was Allah, the Exalted and Glorious, Who gave decisions in our case, three who remained behind. (The words of the Qur’an)” the three who were left behind” do not mean that we remained back from Jihad but these imply that He kept our matter behind them who took oath and presented excuse before Him. This hadith has been narrated on the authority of Zuhri with the same chain of transmitters.

Sahih Muslim 2769 a, b

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