Seek Forgiveness and Repent; He will give you a good enjoyment and abounding grace

Allah says in His Book:

وَأَنِ اسْتَغْفِرُ‌وا رَ‌بَّكُمْ ثُمَّ تُوبُوا إِلَيْهِ يُمَتِّعْكُم مَّتَاعًا حَسَنًا إِلَىٰ أَجَلٍ مُّسَمًّى وَيُؤْتِ كُلَّ ذِي فَضْلٍ فَضْلَهُ ۖ وَإِن تَوَلَّوْا فَإِنِّي أَخَافُ عَلَيْكُمْ عَذَابَ يَوْمٍ كَبِيرٍ‌

“And seek forgiveness of your Lord and repent to Him. He will let you enjoy a good enjoyment for a specified term and bestow His abounding Grace to every owner of grace. But if you turn away, then indeed, I fear for you the punishment of a great Day.” [11:3]

Imam al-Qurtubi, in his tafsir, writes about this ayah:

قوله تعالى‏ (‏وأن استغفروا ربكم‏)‏ عطف على الأول‏.‏ ‏(‏ثم توبوا إليه)‏ أي ارجعوا إليه بالطاعة والعبادة‏.‏ قال الفراء(‏ثم‏)‏ هنا بمعنى الواو؛ أي وتوبوا إليه؛ لأن الاستغفار هو التوبة، والتوبة هي الاستغفار‏.‏ وقيل‏:‏ استغفروه من سالف ذنوبكم، وتوبوا إليه من المستأنف متى وقعت منكم‏.‏ قال بعض الصلحاء‏:‏ الاستغفار بلا إقلاع توبة الكذابين‏.‏ وقد تقدم هذا المعنى في (‏آل عمران)‏ مستوفى‏.‏ وفي (‏البقرة)‏ عند قوله‏ (‏ولا تتخذوا آيات الله هزوا‏) ‏البقرة‏:‏ 231‏]‏‏ وقيل‏:‏ إنما قدم ذكر الاستغفار لأن المغفرة هي الغرض المطلوب، والتوبة هي السبب إليها؛ فالمغفرة أول في المطلوب وآخر في السبب‏.‏ ويحتمل أن يكون المعنى استغفروه من الصغائر، وتوبوا إليه من الكبائر‏.‏.

The statement of Allah, “And seek forgiveness of your Lord” – this is a continuation of the previous verses. “Then repent to Him” – meaning to return to Him in obedience and worship. Al-Fira’ said, “then” here takes the meaning of ‘and’, because al-istighfar (seeking forgiveness) is tawbah (turning in repentance) and tawbah is al-istighfar. And it is said, “seek His forgiveness for the (minor) sins which have occurred, and repent to Him when you fall back into committing some of those (minor) sins.” And some of the righteous people said, “istighfar without the abandonment of sins is the tawbah of the liars.” And that meaning has already been mentioned in surah Aal Imran, and in surah al-Baqarah with Allah’s statement,”And do not take the verses of Allah in jest” [2:231]. And it is said, “The mention of making istighfar came first in this instance because forgiveness is the desired objective, and tawbah is the means to obtain that. So forgiveness is firstly the objective and ultimately the means (for obtaining one’s goals).” And this carries the meaning that istighfar is done for the minor sins, and tawbah is done for the major sins.

(‏يمتعكم متاعا حسنا)‏ هذه ثمرة الاستغفار والتوبة، أي يمتعكم بالمنافع ثم سعة الرزق ورغد العيش، ولا يستأصلكم بالعذاب كما فعل بمن أهلك قبلكم‏.‏ وقيل‏:‏ يمتعكم يعمركم؛ وأصل الإمتاع الإطالة، ومنه أمتع الله بك ومتع‏.‏ وقال سهل بن عبدالله‏:‏ المتاع الحسن ترك الخلق والإقبال على الحق‏.‏ وقيل‏:‏ هو القناعة بالموجود، وترك الحزن على المفقود‏.‏

He will let you enjoy a good enjoyment” – this is the fruits of seeking forgiveness and tawbah. Meaning He provides for them beneficial things, then enlarges their provision, and makes their lives comfortable, and He does not annihilate them with punishment as He did to those whom he destroyed before them. And it is said that ‘to let them enjoy a good provision’ means ‘to extend their lives’ because the essence of a good provision is longevity, and it is from the pleasures which Allah bestows. And Sahl ibn ‘Abdullah said, “The good provision is to leave off demanding one’s rights from the creation.” And it is said, “it is contentment with what is, and abandoning sadness over what is not.

(‏إلى أجل مسمى)‏ قيل‏:‏ هو الموت‏.‏ وقيل‏:‏ القيامة‏.‏ وقيل‏:‏ دخول الجنة‏.‏ والمتاع الحسن على هذا وقاية كل مكروه وأمر مخوف، مما يكون في القبر وغيره من أهوال القيامة وكربها؛ والأول أظهر؛ لقوله في هذه السورة‏ (‏ويا قوم استغفروا ربكم ثم توبوا إليه يرسل السماء عليكم مدرارا ويزدكم قوة إلى قوتكم‏) ‏هود‏:‏ 52‏]‏ وهذا ينقطع بالموت وهو الأجل المسمى‏.‏ والله أعلم‏.‏ قال

For a specified term“. It is said, “this is death”. And it is said, “the resurrection”. And it is said, “entrance into Paradise”. And the good provision in this light is understood to mean protection from every disliked and terrible thing, and included in this is the grave and other than that from the the horrors of the resurrection and its anguishes. And this has been clarified by Allah’s statement elsewhere in this surah, “And O my people, ask forgiveness of your Lord and then repent to Him. He will send [rain from] the sky upon you in showers and increase you in strength [added] to your strength.” [11:52] And this is cut off by death, and that is the specified term. And Allah know best.

‏(‏ويؤت كل ذي فضل فضله‏)‏ أي يؤت كل ذي عمل من الأعمال الصالحات جزاء عمله‏.‏ وقيل‏:‏ ويؤت كل من فضلت حسناته على سيئاته (‏فضله)‏ أي الجنة، وهي فضل الله؛ فالكناية في قوله‏ (‏فضله‏)‏ ترجع إلى الله تعالى‏.‏ وقال مجاهد‏:‏ هو ما يحتسبه الإنسان من كلام يقوله بلسانه، أو عمل يعمله بيده أو رجله، أو ما تطوع به من ماله فهو فضل الله، يؤتيه ذلك إذا آمن، ولا يتقبله منه إن كان كافرا‏.‏ ‏

And bestow His abounding Grace to every owner of grace” – meaning to bestow on every owner of deeds from the doers of good righteous deeds a reward for their deeds. And it is said, “and to bestow on everyone who prioritizes performing good deeds over bad deeds”. “His abounding Grace” – meaning Paradise- and that is the Grace of Allah. The the ‘His” of “His Abounding Grace” is referring back to Allah, the Exalted. Mujaahid said, “this is what is reckoned for man from the words which he says with his tongue, and the deeds which he does with his hands or feet, and what he does of obedience to Allah with his wealth, that is the fadl of Allah; He bestows (the reward for) that when the people are saved, and he does not accept those deeds from those who were disbelievers.”

(‏وإن تولوا فإني أخاف عليكم عذاب يوم كبير)‏ أي يوم القيامة، وهو كبير لما فيه من الأهوال‏.‏ وقيل‏:‏ اليوم الكبير هو يوم بدر وغيره‏:‏ و(‏تولوا‏)‏ يجوز أن يكون ماضيا ويكون المعنى‏:‏ وإن تولوا فقل لهم إني أخاف عليكم‏.‏ ويجوز أن يكون مستقبلا حذفت منه إحدى التاءين والمعنى‏:‏ قل لهم إن تتولوا فإني أخاف عليكم‏.‏

But if you turn away, then indeed, I fear for you the punishment of a great Day” – meaning on the Day of Resurrection, and that is a great day on which there will be many frightful things. And it is said, “the Great Day was the Day of the Battle of Badr, or other than that. And “turn away” could refer to the past and take the meaning “but if you turned away then say (O Prophet Muhammad) to them, ‘Verily I fear for you.'” And it could refer to the future if the letter ‘ta‘ was omitted with the meaning, “Say to them ‘if you do turn away, then verily I fear for you'”.

[Jaami’ li-Ahkaam al-Qur’an 9/5-6]

See also: Avoid the sins which prevent forgiveness and the acceptance of du’a: Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali

See also: The relationship between al-Tawheed and al-istighfaar: Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali

See also: A sin may be beneficial for a person: Ibn al-Qayyim

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3 thoughts on “Seek Forgiveness and Repent; He will give you a good enjoyment and abounding grace

  1. Pingback: The relationship between al-Tawheed and al-istighfaar: Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali | Tulayhah

  2. Pingback: A sin may be beneficial for a person: Ibn al-Qayyim | Tulayhah

  3. Pingback: Four Means of Attaining Allah’s Forgiveness: Imam al-Sa’di | Tulayhah

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