Leaving the Remembrance of Allah: Sheikh al-Fawzan

While describing the munafiqoon in part of surah al-Mujaadalah, Allah says:

اسْتَحْوَذَ عَلَيْهِمُ الشَّيْطَانُ فَأَنسَاهُمْ ذِكْرَ اللَّـهِ ۚ أُولَـٰئِكَ حِزْبُ الشَّيْطَانِ ۚ أَلَا إِنَّ حِزْبَ الشَّيْطَانِ هُمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ

The Shaytaan has overcome them and made them forget the remembrance of Allah. Those ones are the party of the Shaytaan. Indeed, surely the band of Shaytaan are the losers. [58:19]

Commenting on this, sheikh Saalih al-Fawzan said:

بين السبب الذي حملهم على هذا الكذب ، وهذه الأيمان الفاجرة وهو أن الشيطان استحوذ عليهم ، أي : تسلط عليهم وتمكن منهم فصاروا من جنده . ـ

Allah is explaining the reason which caused them to come to this disbelief and to make this false oath [see 58:17-18] – it is that the shaytaan has overcome them. Meaning he has prevailed over them and is in a position of power over them so they have become part of his band.

ـ [فَأَنسَاهُمْ ذِكْرَ اللَّـهِ] و إذا نسوا ذكر الله قلّ الإيمان في قلوبهم وقلت خشية الله في قلوبهم ، فلا يمتنعون من الكذب ومن الأعمال الرديئة ؛ لأنهم لا يذكرون الله إلا قليلاً ، فذكر الله يعصم الإنسان من الشيطان . ـ

فَأَنسَاهُمْ ذِكْرَ اللَّـهِ

So he caused them to forget Allah

When one forgets the remembrance of Allah, the eemaan in his heart decreases. Likewise with the fear of Allah in their hearts. As a result, they do not hold themselves back from lying or lowly deeds. That is because they do not remember Allah, except for only a little, while it is the remembrance of Allah that protects man from the shaytaan.

فإذا ذكر المسلم ربه انطرد عنه الشيطان ولا يتمكن منه ، أما إذا غفل عن ذكر الله قرب منه الشيطان ، والشيطان وسواس خناس ، وسواس مع الغفلة وخناس مع ذكر الله ، هذه عملية الشيطان مع بني آدم ، فهم لما قلّ ذكر الله عندهم تسلط عليهم الشيطان ، فهذا فيه فضيلة ذكر الله ، وأن ذكر الله يطرد الشيطان . ـ

When the Muslim remembers his Lord, the shaytaan flees from him and can not exert any power over him. However, when he becomes absent-minded about the remembrance of Allah the shaytaan comes near to him. The Shaytaan whispers and withdraws: he whispers when one is heedless and he withdraws at the mention of Allah. This is how the shaytaan interacts with mankind, so when man becomes infrequent in his remembrance of Allah, the shaytaan exerts some power over him. This indicates the great virtue of remembering Allah, and shows that the remembrance of Allah drives the shaytaan away.

ـ [أُولَـٰئِكَ حِزْبُ الشَّيْطَانِ] أي : جنده وجماعته ، فالشيطان له حزب ، والله له حزب وله جند ، فلينظر المسلم مع أي الجندين هو ، هل هو مع جند الشيطان وحزبه؟ أو مع جند الله وحزبه ؟ ـ

أُولَـٰئِكَ حِزْبُ الشَّيْطَانِ

Those ones are the party of the Shaytaan

meaning: they are his foot-soldiers and group. For the shaytaan has a group, and Allah has His own group and band. So the Muslim ought to look to see to which group he belongs: is he with the party and band of the shaytaan, or is he with the party and band of Allah?

ثم سجل عليهم الخسارة فقال : [أَلَا إِنَّ حِزْبَ الشَّيْطَانِ هُمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ] الخاسرون في الدنيا والآخرة . ـ

Then Allah decreed for them to be in loss for He said:

أَلَا إِنَّ حِزْبَ الشَّيْطَانِ هُمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ

Indeed, surely the band of Shaytaan are the losers.

Losers in both this life and the next.

[Tafsir Suwar al-Mufassal 1/457-458]

See also: Allah legislated the religion for His remembrance: Imam al-Sa’di

See also: Shaytaan’s address to the disbelievers at the end of time: Tafsir al-Sa’di

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