When Does a Slave Know that a Trial is a Test or a Punishment?

If a person is put to trial with a sickness or an evil affliction physically or with his wealth, how does he know if this trial is a test or anger from Allaah?

Answer: Allaah tests His slaves in prosperity and adversity, in hardship and ease. He sometimes tests them with these things to raise their grade and enhance the status of those people as well as to double their good deeds. This is similar to what Allaah did for the Prophets and Messengers – `alayhim as-Salaat was- Sallam, as well as the righteous people from the worshippers of Allaah As the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) said: the most severely of the people to be tested are the prophets, then those who are next in grade, then the next. Sometimes Allaah does this due to the sins and transgression of the people, so that the punishment can be hurried.

As Allaah said, {And whatever of misfortune befalls you, it is because of what your hands have earned and He pardons much.}

So, what is general for humans is that they are deficient and they do not observe all the obligatory duties. Therefore, what afflicts them is due to their sins and shortcomings with regard to Allaah’s commands.

For this reason, if someone from the righteous slaves of Allaah is afflicted with some disease or something similar, then this is from the type of trials for the prophets and messengers which raises their grades and increases their rewards making them an example for others in having patience and contentment.

So, briefly, it could be a test to raise grades and to make the reward greater, like Allaah does for some of the righteous people. It could be expiation for evil deeds, as is mentioned In the saying of Allaah تعالى {Whosoever works evil, will have the recompense thereof }.

Also the saying of the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam), “A Muslim is not afflicted with distress, nor sorrow, nor disease nor hardship, nor sadness nor any harm except that Allaah expiates from his sins even by a thorn that pricks him.”

As for the saying of the Prophet(sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam), “whomsoever Allaah intends good for, Allaah compels him with a trial,” it could be that this is a punishment which has been hastened due to transgression by the slave and him not having hastened in repenting as is mentioned in the hadeeth of the Messenger (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) that he said, “If Allaah intends good for His slave then He hastens his punishment in this world, and if Allaah prescribes evil for His slave, then Allaah holds back his sins until He recompenses them for him on the Day of Judgment.” [Narrated by Tirmidhi and he declared it hasan] ♦♦♦

[By the Noble: Shaykh `Abdul `Azeez ibn Baaz رحمه الله|Translated by: Abbas Abu Yahya]

About Umm Abdulazeez

"I am a Muslim who is upon the Qur'aan and the Sunnah and upon the methodology of the Salaf As-Saalih (Pious Predecessors). And that can be said in short by saying, 'I am a Salafee' " [Shaykh Al-Albaanee رحمه الله] ________ Sufyaan Ath-Thawree (rahimahullaah) said: “Indeed knowledge should only be learned for the purpose of fearing Allaah. Indeed, knowledge has been given virtue over other than it because with it Allaah is feared.” [Jaam'i Bayaan al-'Ilm wa Fadlihi by Imaam Ibn Abdil-Barr (rahimahullaah)]
This entry was posted in Character, Deeds, Heart, Shaykh 'Abdul-'Azeez Ibn Baaz, Sins, Tazkiyyah|Purification of the soul. Bookmark the permalink.

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