Question: With regards to The Night of Decree, we would like for your emininece to relay to the general masses of Muslims about this noble affair?
Sheikh ‘Abdul ‘Azeez bin Baaz, may Allaah have mercy upon him, states:
“The Night of Decree is the most virtuous of nights. Allaah revealed in it the Qur’aan and He informed that (worship in it) it is better than a thousand months and that it is a blessed night and every matter of ordainment is decreed.
Allaah says in the beginning of Surah ad-Dukhaan:
“Ha-Mim. [These letters are one of the miracles of the Qur’aan and none but Allaah (Alone) knows their meanings.] By the manifest Book (this Qur’aan) that makes things clear, We sent it (this Qur’aan) down on a blessed night [(i.e. Night of Decree) in the month of Ramadan,, the 9th month of the Islamic calendar]. Verily, We are ever warning [mankind that Our Torment will reach those who disbelieve in Our Oneness of Lordship and in Our Oneness of worship]. Therein (that night) is decreed every matter of ordainments. A Command or this Qur’aan or the Decree of every matter) from Us. Verily, We are ever sending (the Messengers), (As) a Mercy from your Lord. Verily! He is the All-Hearer, the All-Knower.” [44:1-6]
And He, glorified be He and Most High, states:
“Verily! We have sent it (this Qur’aan) down in the Night of Al-Qadr (Decree). And what will make you know what the Night of Al-Qadr (Decree) is? The Night of Al-Qadr (Decree) is better than a thousand months (i.e. worshipping Allaah in that night is better than worshipping Him a thousand months, (i.e. 83 years and 4 months). Therein descend the angels and the Ruh [Jibrael] by Allaah’s Permission with all Decrees, Peace! (All that night, there is Peace and Goodness from Allaah to His believing slaves) until the appearance of dawn.” [97:1-5]
It had been authentically reported upon the Messenger of Allaah, may Allaah exalt his rank and grant him peace, that he said: “Whoever stands the Night of Decree having true belief and seeking the reward from Allaah, his past sins will be forgiven for him.” [Bukhaari and Muslim]
Standing it is by prayer, remembrance of Allaah, recitation of Qur’aan and other than that from the avenues of good. This magnificent chapter of the Qur’aan shows that actions in this night are better than one-thousand months in other than it. This is a tremendous bounty and mercy from Allaah upon his slaves.
So it is highly befitting for the Muslims to magnify this night and awaken it with the worship for Allaah. The Messenger of Allaah, may Allaah exalt his rank and grant him peace, mentioned that this night is in the last ten nights of Ramadan and that the odd nights are even more hoped to attain it over other than them. He, may Allaah exalt his rank and grant him peace, said: “Seek it out during the last ten nights of Ramadan, seek it out in every odd night.” [Bukhaari]
Likewise the authentic ahaadeeth have affirmed that this night switches every year and does not fall on one specific night all the time. It could be on the twenty-first night, the twenty-third night, the twenty-fifth night, the twenty-seventh night which is the most desired of nights for it to fall on, or the twenty-ninth night and perhaps it could fall on an even night.
So whoever stands the full ten nights out of true faith and seeking the reward from Allaah will undoubtedly attain it and will succeed with what Allaah has promised its people. The Prophet, may Allaah exalt his rank and grant him peace, would strive even harder during these nights unlike in the previous twenty. ‘Aaisha, may Allaah be pleased with her, stated:
“He would strive in the last ten days of Ramadan more than he would strive in any other.”
And she said:
“When the last ten would enter he would awaken his night, wake his family and tighten his izaar.”
He would also perform i’tikaaf the majority of the time in the last ten. Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, says:
“Indeed in the Messenger of Allaah you have a good example to follow.” [33:31]
‘Aaisha, may Allaah be pleased with her, asked the Prophet, may Allaah exalt his rank and grant him peace: “Oh Messenger of Allaah, if I were to reach the Night of Decree what should I say in it?” He said: “Say: Oh Allaah indeed You are the All-Pardoner and You love pardoning so pardon me.” [At-Tirmidhi]
The Companions of the Prophet, may Allaah be pleased with them and may Allaah exalt his rank and grant him peace, and the Pious Predecessors after them used to exalt these last ten and strive diligently in them with all types of good. Therefore it is legislated for the Muslims wheresoever they may be to follow the guidance of their Prophet, may Allaah exalt his rank and grant him peace, likewise his Noble Companions, may Allaah be pleased with them, and the Pious Predecessors of this nation.
So let them awaken these nights with prayer, recitation of Qur’aan, different types of remembrance and acts of worship out of true faith and seeking the reward from Allaah so that they can achieve the success of forgiveness of the sins, removal of misdeeds and salvation from the Fire. As a bounty and generosity from Alllaah.
The Qur’aan and the Sunnah have both proven that this magnificent promise is attained only through forsaking the major sins as Allaah says:
“If you avoid the great sins which you are forbidden to do, We shall remit from you your (small) sins, and admit you to a Noble Entrance (i.e. Paradise).” [4:31]
And the Prophet, may Allaah exalt his rank and grant him peace, said: “The Five Daily Prayers, Jumu’ah to the next Jumu’ah and Ramadan to the next Ramadan are all expiators for is between them if the major sins are avoided.” [Muslim]
What is binding upon us to mention here is that some Muslims may work diligently in Ramadan and repent to Allaah from what proceeded from his sins then once Ramadan is over he returns to perpetrating his evil deeds and in this is a great danger.
That which is mandatory upon the Muslim is to beware of this and have firm resolve to continue upon the obedience of Allaah and leaving off sin. As Allaah says to His Prophet, may Allaah exalt his rank and grant him peace:
“And worship your Lord until certainty comes to you, i.e. death.” [15:99]
The Most High says:
“O you who believe! Fear Allaah (by doing all that He has ordered and by abstaining from all that He has forbidden) as He should be feared. [Obey Him, be thankful to Him, and remember Him always], and die not except in a state of Islaam (as Muslims) with complete submission to Allaah.” [3:103]
And He says:
“Verily, those who say: “Our Lord is Allaah (Alone),” and then they remain steadfast upon that, on them the angels will descend (at the time of their death) (saying): “Fear not, nor grieve! But receive the glad tidings of Paradise which you have been promised! ”We have been your friends in the life of this world and are (so) in the Hereafter. Therein you shall have (all) that your inner-selves desire, and therein you shall have (all) for which you ask for. ”An entertainment from (Allaah), the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [41:30-32]
The meaning of the verse is that those who proclaimed that their Lord is Allaah, believed in Him, worshiped Him sincerely and were steadfast upon that, the angels will give them glad tidings at the time of death that no fear shall be upon them nor shall they grieve and that their abode is Paradise because of their belief in Allaah and steadfastness upon His obedience and leaving off his disobedience and making ones worship sincerely for Him.
The verses that contain the incitement of firmness upon the religion, steadfast therein and caution from persisting upon sin are many from them is His statement:
“And march forth in the way (which leads to) forgiveness from your Lord, and for Paradise as wide as are the heavens and the earth, prepared for Al-Muttaqun (the pious). Those who spend [in Allah’s Cause – deeds of charity, alms, etc.] in prosperity and in adversity, who repress anger, and who pardon men; verily, Allaah loves Al-Muhsinun (the good-doers). And those who, when they have committed Fahishah (illegal sexual intercourse etc.) or wronged themselves with evil, remember Allaah and ask forgiveness for their sins; – and none can forgive sins but Allaah – And do not persist in what (wrong) they have done, while they know. For such, the reward is Forgiveness from their Lord, and Gardens with rivers flowing underneath (Paradise), wherein they shall abide forever. How excellent is this reward for the doers (who do righteous deeds according to Allaah’s Orders).” [3:133-136]
So we ask Allaah to grant us success in these last nights and other than them to that which He loves and is pleased with and to protect us all from the evils of our ourselves and our evil actions. For indeed He is the Most Kind, Most Generous.”