Wednesday 15 March 2023

Three Likeable Traits of Believers (Selected verses from Qur'an)

We have been sharing the traits of believers that are most liked by our Lord as stated in many verses of Qur'an. In fact, these traits are numerous, and if combined together, these make a long list. The purpose of many facets of character of believers is to encourage them to do acts that are likeable by Allah and encourage them to remain on the path as enunciated for them by Allah. Those who do so are promised innumerable rewards both in this earthly life and that of the life hereafter.

Today, we share the 134th verse of Surah 3. Al-i'Imran in which three more traits are mentioned:

الَّذِيۡنَ يُنۡفِقُوۡنَ فِى السَّرَّآءِ وَالضَّرَّآءِ وَالۡكٰظِمِيۡنَ الۡغَيۡظَ وَالۡعَافِيۡنَ عَنِ النَّاسِ​ؕ وَاللّٰهُ يُحِبُّ الۡمُحۡسِنِيۡنَ​ۚ‏
(3:134) who spend in the way of Allah both in plenty and hardship, who restrain their anger, and forgive others. Allah loves such good-doers."

Let us now see how different exegetes of Qur'an has interpreted this small yet meaningful verse of the Qur'an:

Tafsir Ibn-Kathir
(Those who spend (in Allah's cause) in prosperity and in adversity) ﴿3:134﴾, in hard times and easy times, while active (or enthusiastic) and otherwise, healthy or ill, and in all conditions, just as Allah said in another Ayah: (Those who spend their wealth (in Allah's cause) by night and day, in secret and in public) [2:274] 

These believers are never distracted from obeying Allah, spending on what pleases Him, being kind to His servants and their relatives, and other acts of righteousness. Allah said,
(who repress anger, and who pardon men;) for when they are angry, they control their anger and do act upon it. Rather, they even forgive those who hurt them. 
Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Prophet said, (The strong person is not he who is able to physically overcome people. The strong person is he who overcomes his rage when he is angry.)
This Hadith is also recorded in the Two Sahihs. Imam Ahmad recorded that Ibn `Abbas said that the Messenger of Allah said: (He who gives time to a debtor or forgives him, then Allah will save him from the heat of Jahannam (Hell-fire). Behold! The deeds of Paradise are difficult to reach, for they are on top of a hill, while the deeds of the Fire are easy to find in the lowlands. The happy person is he who is saved from the tests. Verily, there is no dose of anything better to Allah than a dose of rage that the servant controls, and whenever the servant of Allah controls it, he will be internally filled with faith.)
With regard to control of anger, Imam Ahmad recorded that Sahl bin Mu`adh bin Anas said that his father said that the Messenger of Allah said: (Whoever controlled rage while able to act upon it, then Allah will call him while all creation is a witness, until He gives him the choice of any of the Huris (fair females with wide, lovely eyes - as mates for the pious) he wishes.)

Allah said: (who repress anger) meaning, they do not satisfy their rage upon people. Rather, they refrain from harming them and await their rewards with Allah, the Exalted and Most Honored. 

Allah then said, (and who pardon men;) They forgive those who treat them with injustice. Therefore, they do not hold any ill feelings about anyone in their hearts, and this is the most excellent conduct in this regard. 

This is why Allah said: (verily, Allah loves the Muhsinin (the good-doers)). 

This good conduct is a type of Ihsan [excellence in the religion]. There is a Hadith that reads: 
(I swear regarding three matters: no charity shall ever decrease wealth; whenever one forgives people, then Allah will magnify his honor; and he who is humble for Allah, then Allah will raise his rank.)
Yusuf Ali Explanation
Far from grasping material wealth, they give freely, of themselves and their substance, not only when they are well-off and it is easy for them to do so, but also when they are in difficulties, for other people may be in difficulties at the same time. They do not get ruffled in adversity, or get angry when other people behave badly, or their own good plans fail. On the contrary they redouble their efforts. For the charity-or good deeds-is all the more necessary in adversity. And they do not throw the blame on others. Even where such blame is due and correction is necessary, their own mind is free from a sense of grievance, for they forgive and cover other men's faults. This as far as other people are concerned. But we may be ourselves at fault, and perhaps we brought some calamity on ourselves. The righteous man is not necessarily perfect. In such circumstances his behaviour is described in the next verse.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation:
Ie., in spite of this vastness, a person can buy Paradise by spending in the way of God. Not to mention the fact that this vastness of Paradise is only a parable. Its actual expanse is beyond our imagination.

This is said because generally the rich who have money do not have the heart to spend it; so by scolding those who ask about their wrong attitude they earn punishment instead of reward even for such a generous act.

Tafsir Qur'an Wiki:
The emphasis laid on this characteristic has particular relevance to the Battle of Uĥud. Reference to spending in the sūrah is made several times and in the same way as the repeated condemnation of those who refuse to come forward with their money for the cause of God.
They “restrain their anger, and forgive their fellow men.” Fearing God also works in this respect, providing similar motives and leaving similar effects. Anger is a human reaction which is normally combined with or followed by a fit of temper. It is both natural and essential to man. However, it can only be overcome through that higher perception made possible by the positive effects of fearing God and the spiritual strength which man achieves through looking up to horizons which are far superior and more sublime than man’s own needs and interests.
Restraining anger is only the first stage; it is not sufficient on its own. A person may restrain his anger but harbour a grudge. His outward fury becomes a deeply- seated, inward rancour. Needless to say, anger and fury are preferable to harbouring grudges and rancour. The Qur’ānic verse emphasises that the God-fearing do not allow their anger to become a grudge. They forgive others and do not harbour any ill feelings. When anger is deliberately restrained it becomes a burden, a fire which burns internally sending its smoke over man’s conscience in order to blur his vision. Forgiveness, however, ensures a release from that burden. It gives peace of heart and conscience, as well as an easy movement in a more sublime world.
“God loves the benevolent.” Those who spend their money at times of prosperity and hardship are benevolent. Similarly, those who do not hesitate to forgive others after having been angered by them are also benevolent. The Qur’ānic verse tells us that God loves all who are benevolent. Use of the term “love” here is significant. Its pleasant, friendly, bright and compassionate shades are in perfect harmony with the pleasant and honourable atmosphere of help and forgiveness.
Because God loves the benevolent and the good turns they do, those who love God also love to be benevolent. They have the best of all motives. The final comment is, then, not only an inspiring description, it is a statement of fact.
The community which enjoys God’s love and, in turn, loves God and in which forgiveness replaces anger and rancour is a strong, brotherly and closely-knit community. We see here how this directive is clearly relevant to both the military battle and to the battle of life. 

Now you may listen to the following short clipped video to explanation of the aforesaid Ayat by eminent Muslim scholar Nouman Ali Khan:
May Allāh (سبحانه و تعالى‎) help us understand Qur'ān and follow the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, which is embodiment of commandments of Allah contained in the Qur'ān. May Allah help us to be like the ones He loves and let our lives be lived helping others and not making others' lives miserable or unlivable. May all our wrong doings, whether intentional or unintentional, be forgiven before the angel of death knocks on our door. 
وَمَا عَلَيۡنَاۤ اِلَّا الۡبَلٰغُ الۡمُبِيۡنُ‏ 
(36:17) and our duty is no more than to clearly convey the Message.”
That is Our duty is only to convey to you the message that Allah has entrusted us with. Then it is for you to accept it or reject it. We have not been made responsible for making you accept it forcibly, and if you do not accept it, we shall not be seized in consequence of your disbelief, you will yourselves be answerable for your actions on Day of Resurrection.

Reading the Qur'ān should be a daily obligation of a Muslim - Reading it with translation will make it meaningful. But reading its Exegesis / Tafsir will make you understand it fully. It will also help the Muslims to have grasp over social issues and their answers discussed in the Qur'an and other matter related to inter faith so that they are able to discuss issues with non-Muslims with authority based on refences from Qur'an.

May Allah forgive me if my posts ever imply a piety far greater than I possess. I am most in need of guidance.

Note: When we mention God in our posts, we mean One True God, we call Allah in Islam, with no associates. Allah is the Sole Creator of all things, and that Allah is all-powerful and all-knowing. Allah has no offspring, no race, no gender, no body, and is unaffected by the characteristics of human life.

For more Selected Verses, please refer to our reference page: Selected Verses from the Qur'anYou may also refer to our Reference Pages  and Understanding Al Qur'an for knowing more about Islam and Qur'ān.
Photo | Tafsir References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |

An effort has been made to gather explanation / exegesis of the surahs of the Qur'ān from authentic sources and then present a least possible condensed explanation of the surah. In that the exegesis of the chapters of the Quran is mainly based on the "Tafhim al-Qur'an - The Meaning of the Qur'an" by one of the most enlightened scholars of the Muslim World Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi.  
In order to augment and add more explanation as already provided, additional input has been interjected from the following sources: 
  • Tafsir Ibn Khatir
  • Muhammad Asad Translation
  • Yusuf Ali Translation
  • Translation Javed Ahmad Ghamidi / Al Mawrid
  • Qur'an Wiki
  • Verse by Verse Qur'an Study Circle
  • Towards Understanding the Quran
In addition, references of other sources which have been explored have also been given above. Those desirous of detailed explanations and tafsir (exegesis), may refer to these sites.

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